‘Dumb and Dumber To’ Interviews: Kathleen Turner & Rob Riggle


Dumb and Dumber has, surprisingly, aged well. Mostly, that is due to the all-in performances from Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels as Lloyd Christmas and Harry Dunne. But the Farelly Brothers comedy also works because of the numerous “straight” supporting turns of characters who encounter the dunces: Mike Starr as the tough guy enforcer with an ulcer, Lauren Holly as the dreamboat with headlamps for breasts, Victoria Rowell as the “athletic beauty” with two (count ’em) skis, etc.

For Dumb and Dumber To the Farrelly’s were able to cast two newbies with impressive resumes. Kathleen Turner was a big star when Jim Carrey had a small co-starring role in Peggy Sue Got Married. She blazed onto the screen with Body Heat, took risks with auteurs Ken Russell (Crimes of Passion) and John Waters (Serial Mom), and worked with Hollywood royalty (John Huston, Prizzi’s Honor, Sofia Coppola, The Virgin Suicides and Robert Zemeckis, Romancing the Stone and Who Framed Roger Rabbit?). Similar to Jeff Daniels, Turner came from the stage. She is an A-C-T-O-R. She plays Freda Felcher, whom both Lloyd and Harry had schoolboy crushes on in high school. And whose daughter sets forth the plot of the sequel.


Related: The Farrelly Brothers on Brett Fav-re & Dumb and Dumber


Similar to casting the serious Daniels opposite the comedian extraordinaire, Carrey, for the other big Dumb newcomer they cast comedy veteran Rob Riggle. He’s the teacher on the wrong side of the law, Mr. Walters, in 21 Jump Street, but is frequently cast as a wise-cracking policeman, in hits such as The Hangover, The Other Guys, and Let’s Be Cops. In Dumb & Dumber To, Riggle plays twins who track Lloyd and Harry to El Paso because they’ve got a package that’s worth potentially billions of dollars. Deja vu?

We met up with Turner and Riggle to discuss the Dumb and Dumber franchise and chat with Turner in depth about her amazing career.


CraveOnline: It’s so nice to meet you. I’m a fan of many decades of your work. I realized I probably wrote down too many questions, so we’ll see what we can get to. First, did you catch Dumb and Dumber when it was released in 1994?

Kathleen Turner: Nope, I had to catch up with it later.

What’d you think?

I thought it was really silly.

It is really silly. I actually just watched again, yesterday, for the first time since not being a teenager. 

What’d you think?

I was surprised by how much I still liked it. And by how many sections I could just do the dialogue through. I guess maybe I thought it’d be stupid now, but it has a lot of heart.

You know, when I told people I was doing this, their first question was: “Are Jim and Jeff doing it?” Because I guess there was a prequel that everyone hated because Jim (Carrey) and Jeff (Daniels) weren’t involved. 


“A lot of modern comedy to me, and I could be wrong, but there’s an element [of] meanness.”


In 1994, when Dumb and Dumber was released, you were in Serial Mom [Kathleen Turner has a big smile at the mention of Serial Mom]. I actually feel like the Farrelly Brothers and John Waters have a lot in common because their approach to gross situations is done without meanness, but actually just putting characters you can tell that they like, into situations that become gross. Modern R-rated comedy is just so mean. 

The Lincoln Center Film Society in New York just gave John (Waters) a 50-year retrospective. He was like, “Can you believe it, Kathleen? Can you believe they invited me here?” He was so tickled by that. 

But I like what you said. A lot of modern comedy to me, and I could be wrong, but there’s an element [of] meanness. Even toward the central characters. It isn’t just that someone else gets hurt, but it’s humiliating everyone. You know like catching someone in a bad moment and throwing it up on YouTube to humiliate them.

The characters in Dumb and Dumber and Serial Mom or moreso other John Waters characters, you don’t make fun of them. They might make fun of themselves and absurd and ridiculous things might happen to them but we’re not superior to them. Somehow, American comedy thrives on humiliation. And I don’t like that. In the Dumb and Dumber world, the people who look down on them usually get their comeuppance.


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