“It was our second day of shooting [Bad Trip] and this guy pulled a knife on us,” says Andre, with a mix of both joy and concern in his voice. “For this bit, our dicks are caught in a Chinese finger trap. So we’re stretching our junk back and forth. The guy’s like, ‘Oh, hell no!’ He grabbed a knife and chased us out. We could barely run in the thing, and Rel fell down and rolled under a truck. That was terrifying. That was Rel’s second day, not only of filming the movie, but ever doing hidden camera pranks. So he was miserable.”
There are no limits for Andre; anything goes in the name of comedy. The scope may be wider now, but Andre is still up to his same signature brand of absurdist humor. So enters Bad Trip, an extreme hidden camera film that is also something of a road trip adventure for Andre and Howery, one they’ve been working toward since 2013. In the film, Andre and Howery play two best friends who embark on a cross-country journey of self-discovery. In the process, they subject the unknowing public to radical stunts like faking a prison break (with help from co-star Tiffany Haddish) or menial day jobs that result in gushing blood or embarrassing nudity.
While Bad Trip feels like a big moment and natural extension of the comedian’s brand, Andre has been an important face in comedy for years. The Eric Andre Show has been a fixture on Adult Swim since 2012 with its much anticipated fifth season finally arriving in October 2020. Andre has also been a bright spot in series like Man Seeking Woman, Don’t Trust The B—- in Apt. 23, and Two Broke Girls. In recent years, he even landed prominent voice acting roles, appearing in Matt Groening’s Netflix series Disenchantment and Jon Favreau’s The Lion King.
In many respects, Bad Trip is what Andre’s career has been building toward, as he puts together what could easily be his purest—and craziest—piece of work.
DEN OF GEEK: You’re no stranger to unscripted “man on the street” style stuff, but did you intentionally want to make this bigger or have specific goals since it’s a movie?
ERIC ANDRE: The weekend Bad Grandpa was coming out, my agent called me and he’s like, “Hey man, this Bad Grandpa movie is testing through the roof. It’s going to make a bunch of money. You do these crazy pranks.” Season two of The Eric Andre Show hadn’t even come out yet, but he’s like, “You should meet up with Jeff Tremaine and you guys should work on something together.” This is how long I’ve been working on this. At that point I barely knew how to slap a television show together, no less a movie.