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Exec-producer Jody Hill takes you inside the Eastbound & Down bullpen

Kenny with pet cock

HBO

You work on Eastbound & Down with a bunch of your old friends from school  Whats it like when you get together with Danny McBride and Shawn Harwell to write these scripts?

JODY HILL


Its a lot of just us sitting in a room and pounding our heads together till we come up with something. Honestly, we write really hard, starting during the day and going sometimes until one in the morning. We did that for seven months. You do a lot of work  sometimes its hard and sometimes its not  but when we crack each other up, thats when we know were in the sweet spot. We took a trip to Big Bear to kick it off, and for two weeks we were in a cabin kinda laying the foundation for what would become the show this season. We got a pontoon boat, and every day wed go out on the boat and drive around the lake. That was always cool after our brains were fried from writing.

HBO

How many Kenny Powers lines have you guys cooked up that were too offensive to use?

JODY HILL

Um & none? [laughs] You know, we come up with stuff, but you dont want to shock somebody just to shock them. You want to flirt with danger, but it has to come from the character  so you cant use any old thing. There are still kind of rules to make the jaws drop. The cockfighting is something Im really proud of this season: I like the way the scenes are shot & Theyre fun, and kinda sad and irreverent  kind of everything Eastbound & Down is about.

HBO

How hard is it to find new and creative ways to weave profanity together?

JODY HILL

Danny is honestly so talented with that kind of stuff when were writing the scripts and everything. But he certainly adds a few more once the cameras start rolling. Danny constantly amazes me with the way he invents bad words, so I applaud him. Thats pretty much his only contribution, the bad words. [laughs]

"There are so many surprises still to come. I dont want to give anything away, but the first one is just the tickler  the best is yet to come."

HBO

What has this season taught you about Mexican baseball?

JODY HILL

I know nothing about Mexican baseball. Or baseball in general, or any sports. I looked online and got some pictures of it. [laughs] We really just wanted to do something about an American hero, and we thought that athletes are kind of our cultures heroes  theyre icons.

HBO

Speaking of icons, word is that Marilyn Manson is a big fan of your show &

JODY HILL

I just met him at our premiere  he was a really cool guy. And hes a fan; he knows all the Kenny Powers lines and was quoting the show. Its kind of mind-blowing. I saw him back when I was in high school. He performed with Nine Inch Nails in Winston-Salem, NC. So to be meeting him now and hearing that he likes the show is pretty crazy.

HBO

Why is it that everyone loves to quote Kenny so much?

JODY HILL

Kenny Powers is an asshole, but Danny for some reason is able to say these things and you still like the character. I think a lot of that has to do with how funny and weirdly charming Danny is.

HBO

What can fans expect through the rest of the season?

JODY HILL

There are so many surprises still to come. I dont want to give anything away, but the first one is just the tickler  the best is yet to come.

Chapter 7

Season 2