RB: George Clooney is fantastic in this film, as always. Also fantastic, though, are Anna Kendrick and Vera Farmiga, the two supporting roles. They both seem so real. How did you write and direct these women so well?

JR: I wanted to look at the idea of female midlife crisis and explore it through one woman shown at two different ages. The age of Vera's character is a woman in her late 30s, about to turn 40, and Anna Kendrick is a young girl who's right out of college, 23. I wanted to somehow explore the identity crisis that I feel a lot of career women I know go through in their late 30s—or just their 30s in general—and then also show the girl in her early 20s who thinks she knows everything as she gets out of college and looks to the world. Then she meets Alex and starts getting the inkling that things aren't what she thought, and it's a little scary and she would never ever admit it, but she's kind of terrified about becoming the women that she knows she will become.

RB: Do you think your film will get a different perception now than you had originally envisioned due to how many people now can relate to the getting laid off aspect?

JR: Well, certainly the film has more gravity because of the layoffs. Ryan's job, which used to be kind of a side note in the script, has become more of a focal point in how people discuss the film. I hope that it just makes it a movie of the moment. I hope that it makes it a defining movie of what it was like to live in 2009.


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