Kevin Hart and Alan Arkin have teamed up in new boxing comedy Grudge Match, which sees them star alongside Sylvester Stallone and Robert De Niro.
- Congratulations again. Am I correct? This was the first time either of you had worked with Stallone and DeNiro?
Kevin Hart: I've worked with DeNiro before. This is my first time working with Stallone.
Alan Arkin: When did you work with DeNiro?
Kevin Hart: On Little Fockers.
Alan Arkin: You were on that?
Kevin Hart: Yes, I was in that, too.
Alan Arkin: You've done a lot of movies. You lied to me.
Kevin Hart: Yes. I lie to you all the time, Alan. It's fun. I like lying to you.
Alan Arkin: And I'm so damn gullible that I believed everything you told me.
Kevin Hart: That's what makes it fun. Hey Alan, guess what I did yesterday. Went to Niagara Falls.
Alan Arkin: Today?
Kevin Hart: Yesterday.
Alan Arkin: You went to Niagara--after the interviews?
Kevin Hart: Yes, just to go.
Alan Arkin: You have your own plane?
Kevin Hart: No, a helicopter.
Alan Arkin: You have a--God almighty!
Kevin Hart: I'm lying. (laugh)
Alan Arkin: See, I'm so damn gullible I believe everything he's telling me.
- In the old days, he would've said 'Maid of the Mist'. What have you learned from each other in this experience?
Kevin Hart: I want to hear this. What have you learned from me, Alan?
Alan Arkin: You're gonna have to wait a little while. I learned how to be tolerant. I learned a little bit more of about how to be tolerant with this guy. That's about it.
Kevin Hart: You know what I learned? I learned how to really approach my job. I learned how to take this craft seriously. I learned how to respect comedy and I learned how to be grounded from watching Mr. Arkin.
This poised, professional man that I like to call a legend. That's what I learned. And you know what I'm gonna do with all that stuff that I learned?
Alan Arkin: I thank you for not saying 'a legend in his own right'. Because that means, you know, 'this guy was a wash-out'. He didn't really...
Kevin Hart: Is that what that means? It that what 'legend in his own right' means?
Alan Arkin: The minute you hear 'in his own right', you know that the guy didn't really amount to much but they're trying to put him up...
Kevin Hart: Well, I said that to Stallone to his face, so thanks for telling me that now.
Alan Arkin: You said, 'in his own right;?
Kevin Hart: Yes. I was, like...
Alan Arkin: Why didn't you come to me? I told you.
Kevin Hart: Why didn't you tell me this earlier?
Alan Arkin: But you have this kind of a self-possessed thing about you and this entourage that I can't get through I can never/
Kevin Hart: Well, I got to go talk to him. I got to go talk to him and tell him that Alan told me it was a bad thing to say and I apologize for saying it.
- And he's only one a few legends in this film. I mean, do you--I think we, as a society, underestimate our experienced, 'older' folks. What have you really found? What did you learn from this experience from these legends?
Kevin Hart: Honestly, honestly, you know what, for me...
Alan Arkin: He's selling out Madison Square Garden. He doesn't have anything that he needs to learn. I never saw the...
- We're all learning.
Kevin Hart: Yes. You're learning all the time. When you can't learn anymore, it means you don't need to be in the business.
Honestly, I just love the fact that I was around guys who have reached a certain level in their career and--and are still working, are still happy about doing what they love to do.
Alan Arkin: You know what's the best thing about being on a movie set? I'll tell you this and you can say, 'Alan, you're absolutely right'.
The best thing about being on a movie set as an actor as you can walk away from somebody in the middle of a conversation, they can't say anything about it.
Kevin Hart: That's 100 percent right.
Alan Arkin: There's people talking to you, they're telling you their life story, you walk away right in the middle of it and...
Kevin Hart: That's actually 100 percent right.
Alan Arkin: ...they can't say anything about it because they know your mind is on something else. If you do that in life, people would say, 'How dare you do a thing like that'.
Kevin Hart: On a set, it's okay.
Alan Arkin: On the set, it's fine. You just walk away...
Kevin Hart: You did it to me all the time.
- But being on your feet in a comedy...
Alan Arkin: Answer me, Kevin. Isn't that true?
Kevin Hart: Yes, sir, yes, sir. That's right.
- I read that you laughed out loud when you read this script.
Alan Arkin: Yeah.
- You are also an author. So what's the difference between the written comedy and then literally, the standup comedy?
Alan Arkin: Well, the difference is... (laugh)
Kevin Hart: He's going into theater voice. I saw it coming.
Alan Arkin: The difference is, when you're reading it, it's on a piece of paper, it's two-dimensional. And when you're acting it, it's three-dimensional. It's on a thick piece of paper, which is you. You have anything to say about that?
Kevin Hart: Yes, I have something to say about that. Putting it on its feet is always different than what's on the paper because that's when you get to add what you feel would elevate the material that's already there.
Alan Arkin: See, I learned something already today.
Kevin Hart: But I will say there wasn't much that was needed because the material on paper was so strong.
The script was really really good, so us just getting there and doing already what was on page was enough. I was just the 'improv...er' who just likes to throw stuff in wherever I can.
- If we put you two in a grudge match, who would be the last man standing?
Kevin Hart: Alan. He's a biter. Yeah. You're a biter. No, don't...No. Alan, don't go--don't--calm him down. Who's got Alan's pacemaker so we can calm him down?
Alan Arkin: Who's got his pacemaker?
Kevin Hart: I want to calm Alan down.
Alan Arkin: If I don't have my old pacemaker man, I'm (laugh) a dead duck. Hey, I got one for the record
Alan Arkin: I don't have a pacemaker. I have everything else, but I don't have a pacemaker.
Kevin Hart: Thank you, man. Alan, good job, man. We trudged through that.
Grudge Match is out on DVD & Blu-Ray now.