In the new comedy film What Men Want, Taraji P. Henson‘s character Ali Davis finds herself constantly competing with (and losing to) a collection of cartoonishly douchey men at a sports management firm. After injuring her head during a night out, however, she suddenly finds herself able to hear the inner thoughts of all the men around her.
One of these hyper-masculine characters is played by none other than The Daily Show alum and The Detour showrunner Jason Jones. As the comedy actor tells Metro, however, it wasn’t his accomplished resume that got him the job. It was his appearance on a podcast.
How Jason Jones got his What Men Want role
“I was doing press for The Detour last season and I did a podcast. I think it was an NPR podcast or something. Something that I didn’t think anyone really listened to,” he laughs. “Then I got a call from [director] Adam Shankman and he was like, ‘I just heard you on this podcast. It’s great. You’re hilarious. Do you want to do this?’ I was like, ‘Yeah, all right. I guess so. Wait, you heard me where?'”
Jones jokes that the What Men Want director thought he had the “perfect douchey voice” to play one of the many male characters who frequently challenge Davis throughout the film. All jokes aside, however, he doesn’t take it as an insult. In fact, he thinks his character’s voice (and others like it) are necessary to illustrate precisely what Henson’s character is going through.
“She works in the business of sports management,” he says. “She’s surrounded by all of these aggressive men who are constantly belittling her. Maybe they need to get in touch with their feminine side a little bit more. Or maybe they just need to listen more and realize what they’re saying and doing. Basically, it’s not the best collection of men I’ve ever seen.”
Jason Jones on playing a “bro” in What Men Want
The creator and star of the TBS series The Detour also appreciate the brief break from his duties as showrunner.
“It’s nice to only have one job to do on something,” he laughs. “It was more of a vacation than anything. I got to go hang out in Atlanta, which is a great town with great food. We’d shoot 12-hour days and as soon as I was done, I was done. But when you’re producing, writing, directing and starring in a show, there are costume meetings and all kinds of stuff after you’ve shot a full day. So yeah, this was paradise.”
What Men Want release date
What Men Want hits theaters this Friday.