Sometimes you just need to skip the big Manhattan red-carpet to-do and premiere your movie on your own terms. For director Joe Swanberg, that meant debuting his new flick, Drinking Buddies, at the Nitehawk in Williamsburg, Brooklyn—which is, fittingly, a cinema-cum-bar. The movie explores the romantic blunders of the employees of a Chicago craft brewery, who are played by Olivia Wilde, Jake Johnson, Anna Kendrick, and Ron Livingston.
“This film is a love letter to beer, the same way I think Sideways is a love letter to wine,” said Wilde, even though her own relationship with beer hasn’t always been so smooth. During a three-day beer boot camp orchestrated by Swanberg, pre-production, she was splashed in the eye by some boiling hops. Wanting to play it cool, however, Wilde went about three weeks without telling anyone how badly she was hurt: “I was in horrible, horrible pain!”
Beer under the bridge at this point, because working on this film has turned Wilde into a Grade-A craft-beer aficionada. She currently swears by Zombie Dust ale from Three Floyds Brewing Co. And that was all part of the plan, explained Swanberg, who answered questions with a can of Revolution Brewing Oktoberfest lager in hand (from the actual brewery used in the film). Between sips, the director offered, “If this movie encourages anyone to drink better beer, it will be a massive success.”