Mark Wahlberg doesn’t do sequels. For years there’s been talk of a second “Italian Job,” a second “Four Brothers,” even a follow-up to “The Fighter” that follows other boxers. But so far nothing has materialized, in part because he’s picky.
“When people talk about sequels I always just shrug it off,” Wahlberg tells us. “If they develop a script I’ll take a look at it. I always want to do something different and change the dynamic.”
And yet here’s “Ted 2,” his first sequel and a fairly different film than 2011’s “Ted,” in which he played the owner/friend of a magically sentient talking bear, voiced by co-writer/director Seth MacFarlane.
“It was only worth doing it if we could make it better than the first. It had to be its own thing,” says Wahlberg.
Part of that had to do with getting another chance to work and hang with MacFarlane. “Seth and I really have a lot in common. We have a knowledge of old, old television from the ’70s and ’80s,” he explains.
That’s one reason they’re comfortable together onscreen, though they’re not as ad-lib-heavy as it may seem. “We play around a lot. But the writers are so good you don’t need to improv so much. You might find yourself in a scene where you need to interject life into it. But it’s not as necessary as it is in other situations.”
The concept of Mark Wahlberg as a comedic actor shouldn’t be too odd by now. Though he wasn’t in full-blown comedies until “The Other Guys,” with Will Ferrell, and “Date Night,” he played amusingly oblivious in “I Heart Huckabees” and stole every scene he had as a cocky insult machine in “The Departed.” He’s reunited with that film’s foul-mouthed screenwriter, William Monahan, twice, including last year’s deeply sarcastic “The Gambler” and a small part in his upcoming film “Mojave.”
“His scripts just speak to my own sense of humor, the way I look at stuff,” Wahlberg says of Monahan’s work. “I just love the rhythm of his writing. He gets me.”