Seven Evil Ex-Boyfriends
Oh, have we not mentioned that yet? See, Scott Pilgrim’s also a little bit in love. While dating 17-year-old schoolgirl Knives Chau, he falls for Amazon delivery girl Ramona Flowers (Mary Elizabeth Winstead).
Promptly dumping said schoolgirl, Scott attempts to charm Ramona into his arms. Catch is – she has seven evil ex-boyfriends whom Scott must defeat if he wants to date her.
Spread out across the six graphic novels, Scott encounters each of Ramona’s exes one at a time – each of them harder to defeat than the last, each with their own calling card.
There’s Matthew Patel, Todd Ingram, Lucas Lee… and the mysterious and terrifying Gideon, who we have barely even glimpsed in the book series, but will be played in the movie Jason Schwartzman.
For their movie incarnations, Wright hand-picked two past and present superheroes in the forms of Brandon Routh and Chris Evans, as well as a raft of little-known actors for the rest of the exes.
“That was a fantastic time,” says new Captain America Chris Evans. “My only frustration with that movie was that my part was so small. I was there in the beginning doing rehearsals and training with the cast, but then I left for about a month and a half.
“Then I came back and we filmed my character for about three weeks, maybe four, and then I left again, and they kept filming for another two months. It was so sad because I'd been having such an amazing time.”
The sequential, episodic clashes between Pilgrim and the exes helped Wright feel he was getting somewhere with the titanic shoot.
“The nature of the exes, it feel like more of a TV series because it’s, like, Chris Evans month, and then it’s May Whitman month, and then Brandon Routh month,” the director says of the shoot. “So I guess that’s the way it sort of feels like. But it’s like a seven deadly sins-type film.”
For Scott’s love interest Ramona Flowers, Wright cast Mary Elizabeth Winstead - she of Death Proof and various slasher flicks.
"I think just about everyone is doing something that’s completely different from what you’ve seen them do before," Winstead enthuses. "Like Brandon Routh is so funny, he’s awesome. And Chris Evans is hilarious. I could barely stop laughing on a single take, it was unbelievable. So I think everybody’s going to be really, really happy with all the exes. "
Meanwhile, Mark Webber and Alison Pill pitch up as Pilgrim's bandmates.
Says Wright: “They all worked really hard, and there’s a mixture of people who can play. Like Michael is a great musician – and then there’s a mix of people who can play, and then people who had to learn an instrument for the part. But they worked really hard at it, and it shows.”
He also acknowledges that he attempted to cast “fantastic people in small parts”. “The thing I’m really pleased about with this film, as opposed to some of the other comedies out there – and even stuff I’ve done before – is that it has a lot of funny women in it.”
With the prep work all done, now it was time to actually shoot the thing…