Season 2

Chapter 7

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

HBO

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

JODY HILL


It’s 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 it’s hard and sometimes it’s not – but when we crack each other up, that’s when we know we’re 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 we’d 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 don’t want to shock somebody just to shock them. You want to flirt with danger, but it has to come from the character – so you can’t use any old thing. There are still kind of rules to make the jaws drop. The cockfighting is something I’m really proud of this season: I like the way the scenes are shot … They’re 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 we’re 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. That’s pretty much his only contribution, the bad words. [laughs]

"There are so many surprises still to come. I don’t 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 culture’s heroes – they’re 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 he’s a fan; he knows all the Kenny Powers lines and was quoting the show. It’s 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 don’t want to give anything away, but the first one is just the tickler – the best is yet to come.