Have you ever stumbled upon a photo of a celebrity and immediately wondered what they were thinking in that very moment? In Elite Daily’s series, I Can Explain…, we’re asking celebrities to revisit their most memorable photos and tell us exactly what was going on in their heads. Whether they open up about an iconic look or a hilarious red carpet incident, we’re traveling back in time to find out what really went down.
On the list of the most iconic coming-of-age comedies, Seth Rogen's 2007 classic Superbad is definitely somewhere close to the top. The movie is hyper-relatable, relentlessly vulgar, and very, very rated-R. Therefore, it was a must-watch film for anyone over the age of 12. The stuff of legends. Which is why 23-year-old Molly Gordon was stoked to book her role as Hannah in Rogen's latest comedy Good Boys. After starring in hit movies such as Life of the Party and Booksmart, Gordon definitely is no stranger to starring in R-rated comedies about sex (among other things). What she wasn't used to when she signed on for Good Boys, however, was filming an R-rated comedy — rife with dirty jokes and cursing — with a bunch of 11-year-olds. Molly Gordon's story about filming Good Boys with kids will definitely crack you up.
"How will they pull this off?" was her initial reaction to reading the Good Boys script, she tells me. The story revolves around a pre-teen named Max, played by Jacob Tremblay, and his mission to figure out how to kiss after he's invited to his first "kissing party." His plan: Spy on his high-schooler neighbor Hannah, who, according to him, "is a nymphomaniac." (That's "someone who has sex on land and sea," according to Max, who is clearly a sex expert, FYI.)
"I think [Max] thinks that when I'm with my best girl friend, we're kissing. When I'm with my boyfriend, we're kissing," Gordon explains about Max's misguided plan. "Because you don't understand when you're a kid."
Gordon's character has her own problems to deal with, however — the least of which is a bunch of 6th graders trying to spy on her kissing.
"I think she's in a state in her life where she's like, 'Men suck,'" Gordon shares. It's that sentiment that sets Hannah on a mission. "She's like, 'I'm not going to take this anymore and I want to teach these kids a lesson that you're not allowed to spy on women.'" Definitely a good lesson for men to learn sooner rather than later. And of course, hijinks ensue.
Once Gordon got past the shock of all the R-rated content in the film, she realized that just because we're not used to seeing kids cursing and talking about sex on the big screen doesn't mean it's not happening IRL. "My guy friend read [the script] and he was like, 'I connect with this so intensely.' And then I read it again ... I think I was aware of all of these things when I was a kid. And when you're a kid now, it's like you can't hide from it. It's all on the internet."
Ultimately, the message of the film is a lot deeper than a bunch of prepubescent boys trying desperately to teach themselves how to kiss, anyway. "I liked that the message of the movie was don't grow up too fast and learn to be a good person," she explains. "But also getting to have the fun, kooky parts of seeing guys grow up and learn new things."
However, the movie's relatable message didn't mean Gordon wanted to be the one to teach her young castmates — Tremblay, Keith L. Williams, and Brady Noon — what all the R-rated content they were cluelessly discussing onscreen really means.
"I had just done Booksmart, where I could say anything," she tells me. "It was interesting to go from that right into working with kids where I was like, 'Molly, you can not speak that way.' ... When they would ask me, 'Molly, what does this mean?' I would just be like, 'I don't know either!' because I don't want to be the one [to tell them]. Their parents can deal with that later," she says, laughing.
But there was definitely one upside to working on a comedy with a cast full of kids: The parties involved a lot of pizza.
"It was funny," she says, recalling the Good Boys start party. "The director and the producers were ... apologizing that we were having a pizza party ... They thought the adults would be like, 'Why aren't we at a bar?'" That couldn't have been further from the case for Gordon. "Are you kidding? I get to make pizza and drink wine? It was great."
And based on Gordon's photo with Tremblay at that start party, which she happily annotated for Elite Daily, it sure looks like they made the most of the pizza-making festivities. I've got FOMO, foreal.