Rob Riggle has the pleasure of starring opposite Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill in Friday's 21 Jump Street. He plays a gym teacher mentoring their characters, who are undercover as high school students. We asked Rob where he'd sneak in, if he could, and chatted about the fun of making the film with Channing and Jonah in New Orleans. Rob has another idea about an '80s series ripe for a comeback — and his pick may surprise you.
this is Jonah's baby, this is Jonah's project, he executive produced, he co-wrote, he stars. I mean I have to promise I'll never go to a dance club. This movie takes place largely in a high school. What were you like in high school? I was half and half. My early high school experience, I was a late bloomer so everybody was bigger than me and tougher than me and I was pretty much scared all the time. But then puberty caught up and I was able to play sports and get more involved in school and did drama radio and television at the high school. I got some self-confidence and some self-esteem from all of that. So I had a good high school experience overall. And the culmination of the movie happens at the prom for a lot of people really It's the culmination of high school. Is that something you could relate to? I mean, I don't know if it was the culmination for me. It was just another great party. But we had a nice prom. I had a very nice girl who I took and we had a blast. It was a lot of fun. Now Channing and Jonah's characters go undercover at the high school. I'm wondering if you could go undercover anywhere, where would you go? I would go undercover wherever my wife and her friends hang out. 'Cause i know they're up to no good. It would be fun to be a fly on the wall when they're having girl time and just chattin' up, 'cause I'm sure she's throwing me under the bus. So they play cops. And who would you rather have arrest you in real life, Channing or Jonah? Channing, because I think I could talk him into letting me go. Oh, interesting. Yeah, yeah. I mean I'd have to promise him that we'd go to a dance. this club or whatever. I heard that Channing actually threw some pretty epic parties during the production of this movie. Can you confirm or deny those reports? Yeah, you know, we were in New Orleans. It was summertime. A lot of good things were happening. Yeah. It was a lot of fun. Any stories you can repeat on camera? No, not a lot. Now, were you a fan of 21 Jump Street the series when it was on back in the day? I guess, I was a fan. I was not like a hardcore fan. I was not there every Friday watching the show, but I definitely was familiar with it. I thought the cast was pretty cool and I thought the concept was pretty cool, I saw my fair share of episodes. The series is so close the tie with Johnny Depp obviously he was the star in, you know his shadow kind of looms over this movie. Do you know how involved he was in getting the movie made or did they have his blessing from the get-go? You know, I mean this is Jonah's baby, this is Jonah's project. He executive produced, co-wrote, and stars in this. He is the one who really brought this to the table. and I think Johnny was hearing about it in the media and John was saying I would love for him to be in it and reporters would ask Johnny if he wanted to be in it and he would say yeah I want to be in it. But it was definitely great that members of the original TV show, you know, the cameos that you might see in the movie are outstanding. Are there any other vintage TV series that you think are right for a comeback on the big screen? might as well do a Punky Brewster I guess right? Isn't that about time? Yeah. For a Punky blowout? That would be awesome. Just punk with a capital e.