The It’s Always Sunny Episode That Had Charlie Day Worried About The Cameraman

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Written By Sedoso Feb

The single-shot effect certainly makes “Charlie Work” one of the more cinematic episodes of “It’s Always Sunny.” It calls to mind the same effect that was famously used in the 2014 film “Birdman,” but as Day pointed out in a 2015 interview, “this was pre-‘Birdman.'” However, they did use the extended-take episode of “True Detective” season 1 as a point of reference, which is why Howerton’s character Dennis keeps doing a Matthew McConaughey impression.

“We’re always looking for new ways to challenge ourselves,” Howerton continued. “That’s a lot where that came from. And we were kind of leaning into the fact, because I do think that episode’s funny, but we were also kind of leaning into the idea that it didn’t really have to be that funny, it just had to be interesting to watch.”

It was interesting to watch, no doubt, but the single-shot effect presented a lot of obstacles for the “Sunny” cast and crew. The actors had to be extra rehearsed and make sure they had all their lines and their cues down pat so as not to ruin the flow of the extra-long shots. This gave them the effect of a live theater performance.

“It felt like doing a play, didn’t it?” Howerton asked his co-star, who confirmed it did feel like doing a play. “I had the feeling I used to have from doing plays where you’re waiting in the wings for your cue […] You don’t want to mess it up, you don’t want to screw up the timing because it messes up the whole f***ing take. You don’t want to be the last guy in the thing who screws it up.”

Believe it or not, the actors weren’t the ones with the hardest jobs on set that week — Day was more worried about the crew.


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