Zooey Deschanel Talks “500 Days of Summer” | On Location w/ Josh Horowitz

Zooey Deschanel Talks “500 Days of Summer” | On Location w/ Josh Horowitz


– I’ve actually sung karaoke many times with Joe Gordon-Levitt. This is very important of
the people who hate Summer to go back and watch the scene. I was rooting for the relationship! – [Josh] Did Tom and Summer
ever get back together? Was there a chance in hell? – I think there is. (upbeat music) – Sometimes it can seem
like movie romances only happen in New York or Paris, but in 2009 “500 Days of Summer”
found love and heartbreak right here in downtown LA. This park is known as Angel’s Knoll and this bench, well, this
is where Tom and Summer bonded and finally broke
up for good in the movie. “500 Days of Summer” was a
surprise right from the get go. It premiered at the Sundance Film Festival to rapturous audience
and critical reviews. Before that, Joseph Gordon
Levitt was best known for playing an alien on a sitcom, and Zooey Deschanel for
singing in the shower in “Elf.” “500 Days of Summer” told a
familiar boy meets girl story in an unusual way, zigzagging in time, and always from the boy’s
very skewed perspective. Tom may not have been
the most reliable hero, but he did have good
taste in architecture. 500 Days took advantage of LA’s beauty in many unexpected ways. Let’s go to the map. Much of 500 Days takes
place in downtown LA, surrounded by architectural gems like the Fine Arts Building and the Eastern Columbia Building. Tom and Summer first meet at work. The Fenton Building on South
Spring Street is home to their greeting card company. After the couple first gets together, Tom makes a triumphant visit to Grand Park for a memorable dance to Hall and Oates. If you think the building at the end, where Tom meets Autumn, is familiar, you’re just a perceptive movie nerd. That’s the Bradbury Building, also famously used in Blade Runner. But before things fall
apart for Tom and Summer, their relationship really
sparked at an after-work karaoke spot shot at the Redwood Bar. That’s where we’re meeting up with Summer, AKA Zooey Deschanel, herself. We’re at the Redwood, Zooey. – [Zooey] We are, yes. – Back 10 years later. What do you remember about
being at the Redwood? – I don’t remember that
it was called the Redwood. All I know is it’s like nautical theme, has a lot of ropes and
there’s some ship windows. – Yes, I’ve been in there. I can attest to that. – Yeah, so. – It’s still like that. – Yeah. – So downtown LA, when I
think of “500 Days of Summer”, I think of it not just as an LA movie, but a downtown LA movie. – It is a downtown LA movie, and it shows all the beauty
and the glory of downtown LA. It was in its heyday
in the twenties really. – Yeah. – And then LA started spreading out. – Yes. – And downtown was a little
bit abandoned for a long time. And because of that, it didn’t
build up in the same way as a New York City or a
Chicago did, you know. – So is it funny to you
that now in the years since 500 Days, like downtown LA
is, like, the hip, fashionable part of town? – It is a hip and
fashionable part of town. It’s really cool and
it’s had a resurgence, which is really great. – Maybe “500 Days of Summer”
should get the credit, Zooey, is what I’m saying. – Maybe we get a little credit. – Okay. – A touch. – Okay. Shall we go inside check it out? – Let’s do it. – All right, let’s see
if anything’s changed. (piano music) This is it. – This is it. This is where Tom and
Summer kind of bonded. – Yeah. – Shall we assume the
Tom and Summer location? – Let’s do it. – You’re Summer. I’ll be Tom. – Okay. – Let’s talk about where you were at when “500 Days of Summer” came around. Where you looking for
this kind of a movie? I don’t even know what this kind of a… There’s aren’t many movies like this. – Yeah, it’s always been a
challenge to find, you know, female characters that are well developed and three dimensional. – Yeah. – The thing about this
movie that was actually really interesting was that
the character is a three dimensional character but that
plays in like two dimensions in the context of the film. So the challenge for me was
actually trying to come up with a person that really
was real but, like, a lot of who she was doesn’t play on camera… – Yes. – ’cause it’s all from his point of view. – That’s the key to
understanding the film… – Yeah. – is that we’re watching this, and I think it was lost on some
people maybe the first time they saw it… – Yes. – because you think you were
watching some kind of thing that you’ve seen a hundred times before. – Yeah. – When in reality you’re watching a hugely skewed
perspective on the romance. – Yes, well and I know immediately
that somebody’s probably only watched it once if they
say, “Oh, I hate Summer” and I’m like, “Well, watch it again. Hear what she says. She’s very honest.” – Did you feel like you shared
much in common with Summer? Did you feel like there’s a
lot of Zooey in that character? – No, I felt that she’s so
much cooler than me, yeah. (both laugh) – So this sequence in particular
is a pretty important one. – Yes. – This is like the first
extended conversation, where they really start to like talk. – Yes, yeah, yeah, yeah. This is very important for
the people who hate Summer to go back and watch this scene, because she says… – She literally says, “I don’t want to be anybody’s girlfriend”. – She doesn’t want to
be anybody’s girlfriend. – [Zooey as Summer] I
like being on my own. Relationships are messy and
people’s feelings get hurt. Who needs it? – I mean, you can’t be…
– It’s in the first.. – anything more direct than that. (both laugh) – It’s like the first
conversation they really have where it’s not just him like
kind of from afar, you know. – Right. – Actually, one of the
funniest things to me when you watch the scene
where they’re in bed and they’re talking to each other, and then the narrator sorts… Then she, it’s like her voice,
whose a confessional voice, just completely fades out,
and then the narrator is like, “Tom felt so special that
she had never told anyone these things before”. – [Narrator] He wondered if anyone else had made it this far. – But I’m like… – But what did she say af– – But what, listen to what she’s saying. It’s all about him. – Yes. – And this is the thing that
makes it such a great movie, I think, is that it is from
this really distinct perspective of this person who’s so fixated
on this person that they’ve created a relationship
beyond what’s actually happening with them. – Yes. – But I think it’s so
charming and Joe is so good, and it’s so well directed,
and the script is so good that… – You’re lost in it. – You are just like, yes, I fully, I want everything he wants. – You’re protective of Summer. It seems like over the years… – I am, well so I actually
never expected people that there would be
people who disliked her, and I was, like, “Why would you hate her?” And I’m like, it’s a
testament to how well done the movie was. You’d be hard pressed to find a person that’s that forthcoming with their… – Totally. – feelings right off the bat. She doesn’t lead him on at all. – No. – She just says, you
know, she says right away. – One of the great scenes
is the expectations versus reality scene. – Oh yeah, yes. – So Tom comes to this
party that Summer… – It’s become a meme. – It’s huge. It’s wonderful, and it’s just shot so well and the music’s great. So essentially you’re shooting
two different versions of that scene essentially, right? – Yes. – Is that your recollection of it? – Yeah, some of them it was
like we start off the same and then just slightly
change it, you know. Marc Webb who directed the movie
is such a master of that… – Yeah. – subtlety, yeah. He did a really great job. – What’s it like to see
that finished sequence, ’cause it plays with the
music and the side-by-side? It’s just perfect. – It’s perfect, yeah. And he, Marc, came from
doing music videos, so he really has such a great sense of doing things with music. I mean, I buy into it,
and feel sad watching it. I want the expectation to happen. (laughing) Personally. – You’re ready for the relationship
even though you’re not. – I was ready for the relationship. I mean, I’m protective of the character, but I also feel the best
movies end either ambiguously or sa– or kind of melon–,
in a melancholy kind of way. – Yes. – Like all my favorite movies,
the ones that stick with you, there’s like a little, there’s
a little dig at the end. – Yeah. – It’s like if I think
about, like, The Graduate… – Yes. – There are so many great movies
that have just that little, like, no, we’re not gonna give you that happy ending, you know. – Right. The other important part of this sequence, here at the Redwood, is
the karaoke sequence. – Yes. – I want to take a look over there. – Let’s do it. – All right. (upbeat music with clapping) – So this is the karaoke stage. – We got a good view. – Yes. – Behind us is the bar
where you guys talk about The Knight Rider theme song. – Mmm-hmm. (laughs) – In front of us is
where you guys, you know, come together in a way,
because we get to see you sing. – Mm-hmm. – We get to see Tom sing. – Mm-hmm. I’ve actually sung karaoke many times with Joe Gordon-Levitt so, prior to this, so… – You had been preparing
and you didn’t even know it. – I didn’t even know it, yes, yeah. He got kicked off of a stage once, because he got too into the song. – That sounds like Joseph Gordon-Levitt. – I don’t know if he remembers that, but I remember it. So funny, yeah. – How did you select the song? Was that in the script? Was your song in the script? – No, they asked me for some suggestions and I suggested Sugar Town. Generally speaking, I mean the soundtrack to this movie is great. The music is really important to this. – Yeah. – I mean, the quote
unquote meet cute moment is all based around a
mutual love of The Smiths. – Yeah, you know a film
has a good soundtrack if when you hear the song,
you immediately picture the place in the movie… – Yes. – or you immediately think of that movie. So a number of the songs from this movie, when I hear them I just
immediately think of “500 Days of Summer”. – What do you remember about… – And not just ’cause I was in it. – But I mean it is part and
parcel of a great romance to have a great soundtrack. – Yes. – Like you think of all the classics. It doesn’t work without that. – Yes, it’s the thing
I miss about mix tapes. I miss the, giving music
as a gift, you know. – Totally. You know what the greatest gift would be? – What? – Giving the “500 Days of
Summer” soundtrack to a friend. – On vinyl. – On (laughs). – I said it. – Another big musical moment of the film that doesn’t actually
involve you, but it’s Joe dancing to Hall and Oates. – Yes, which I love that sequence and I was sad I wasn’t in it, in retrospect. I think it makes a lot more sense if I’m not in it. – It kind of works that he’s
so like in his own weird world. – Yes, the fact that he’s having this like celebratory moment by himself
with a bunch of strangers, it’s sort of speaks to that same, like, skewed perspective… – Yep. – that we spoke about earlier. So I think it was perfectly done and I love that dance sequence. – Did Tom and Summer
ever get back together? Is there a chance in hell? – I think there is. – Really? – Yeah, definitely. – Oh, the eternal romantic. – They have such good chemistry. (laughing) – Okay, now I have something
to look forward to. Excellent. Thank you for showing me around… – Thank you. – your old haunts. – Yeah, my old haunts. My favorite place. – Let’s go sing some karaoke. – Okay. – Wait, that’s a really bad
idea for me to sing karaoke with Zooey Deschanel. (laughing) (upbeat music) – Penis. – Penis. – Penis! – Penis! – Penis! (laughing) – So you’re a big fan
of “500 Days of Summer”. – I don’t know what you’re talking about.

100 thoughts on “Zooey Deschanel Talks “500 Days of Summer” | On Location w/ Josh Horowitz

  1. I met a guy who told me about his recent breakup. I said, "you are the guy from 500 Days of Summer. Stop being that guy." He hadn't seen the movie. He did, changed his ways, met a new girl, wasn't a Tom, and it worked. They're married with kids. He even callled me and thanked me. Now I'm thanking 500 Days.

  2. In my country, it's not that common for us to have a friend with benefit. So if she said she didn't want a relationship but making out with the man in the next day, it's a taboo thing for me personally. I'd think exactly like tom.

    So maybe a friendly tip if you have a lifestyle like summer, maybe don't do it with a man that clearly states true love exist and his driving force is finding love, do it with a man that has a same lifestyle as you.

  3. I saw this movie after my girlfriend for 2.5 years just went and married a stranger cause her mom was dying.
    This movie was the closure I needed! Fck u *****!

  4. People miss the point of this movie by picking sides. Neither is necessarily a bad person, but both of them are selfish. Tom has this dream of meeting his manic pixie dream girl, once she is in his life, everything will be perfect forever, but he doesn't consider the girl's feelings. On the other hand, while Summer, at first says she doesn't want a relationship, she still acts like her girlfriend, and literally, when she is introduced, it is explained that she has always got her way because of her beauty. The first time she opens up to Tom is when he gets angry and confronts her, which is something she is not used to. Later on at the party, once again both of them are wrong, he goes thinking the relationship can pick up once more, thinking its all about him, and she, knowing full well how he is and acts, still invites him, dances with him and falls sleep on him. The movie deals on expectations and reality, and how we cant just get what we want without considering your partner's feelings.

  5. Looks like 'Professional Quirky Girl' Zooey has had surgery on her face. She's going the way of the Olsens. Weird people.

  6. "DTLA is a hip/fashionable part of town….to your left there are a few homeless people shooting up and taking dumps on the sidewalk, but disregard."

  7. i want to thank every flannelbeard man out there who misinterpreted this movie and thinks girls with bangs are hard-to-get MPDG's

  8. What was heartbreaking to me was that in truth Summer wasn't uninterested in a relationship, she was uninterested in a relationship with Tom , hence shes married in the end of the movie. She just had to meet the right person, so the whole "I am not interested in a relationship right now" is just saying "I haven't meet anyone yet, that have made me want to be in a relationship". And that is life, and you can't blame Summer for that.

  9. Zooey is so damn cute, but summer shadows always haunted me. I think, its not about hating Summer, but Summer leave us post traumatic experience with 'sweet girl' that after watching the movie, i become cautious person when i met cute girl (that i think) attracted on me. But, i learn a lot from this movie that i had to control my expectation, and don't let my feeling taking over.

  10. I think the reason that people root for Tom and hate Summer is that they have that skewed version of love where the other person will change for you and somehow you'll end up being the sole exception to all their rules and patterns. Not only that but they keep expecting people to change their own lives as well.

  11. 0:20 gets it wrong right of the bat. It was not a romantic movie it was about a boy and a girl. Says it right at the beginning of the movie.

  12. Imagine if this movie had come out now after all the Morrisey memes about how he’s not Robert Smith and all of his conservative nationalist comments. She would’ve probably said “I love The Cure. Disintegration is a masterpiece.”

  13. If summer where to be seen on her perspective it be called "new girl"… Kinda sad that this movie some how pigeon herself to this type of character…

  14. People hate summer because she said she doesn't want to be anyone's girlfriend and then treats Tom ALMOST like a boyfriend. It's like she's playing the "I'm not touching you" game with Tom.

  15. 500 Days of Summer will always resonate with guys because they have been or probably are in Tom's shoe's when they watch it.

  16. The expectations vs reality scene it was masterful executed, it is one of the best scenes I seen in movies, it was just so heartbreaking 🙁

  17. Had I watched this movie when it came out during my teen years, it probably would have spared me some misunderstanding and heartbreak down the road. Tom is the every man, the guy who is very lonely to the point of jumping on any romance he can get because- although he doesn't recognize it- he's desperate for it. Thus he paints a narrative on himself and the girl, one that fits the fairy tales that society and pop culture is glad to feed into. It's tragic but understandable. And I'm glad this movie took the approach that it did and put a mirror up to it.

    Also I still got a mild celeb crush on Zooey and this video only fed into it, despite what I had just stated earlier about projecting, I'm only human I guess haha.

  18. I love this movie. I get Summer. I actually feel sorry for her. She was honest since beginning, and I think during the relationship she tried to love him. When she chose watch a movie instead of going back to her room as Tom suggests we can see that she’s trying but she’s not happy. When she’s crying at the end of the movie that they’re watching I think it shows that she wanted to feel the same way Tom does, but she doesn’t love him. Also in the end she says “I just woke up one day and I knew…. what was never sure of if you”.

  19. The thing is, people who say that Summer was not in the wrong don't take in consideration that while she was always open and used to say that she didn't believe in love and didn't want to have a serious relationship, she then went on and fucking married a dude. She also wasn't mature enough to put an end to her thing with Tom (just ghosted him) and was at least amazingly insensible in inviting him to her fucking engagement party and not telling him about it. So yes, while Tom is far from being perfect and might be indeed the reason their relationship didn't flourish. She wasn't even close to being this character that people choose to see. One who's actions are justified by "I told you the moment we met/ you didn't listen to me". She was also full of flaws, childish and cold. The movie just shows us that some relationships are meant to make people better (more mature) after it's end.

  20. funny how in these discussions make Tom as a needy/boyish/one sided person…
    while years ago after i watched the movie, there are many who defend Tom…

    looks like society has change…
    I will still stand for Tom…

    he has the right to want someone he loves
    does he guilty to have hope for Summer?
    if Summer does not want/unsure with him, why continue to give him hope?

    it will be so funny if Autumn's boyfriend/friend when Tom met her in the end is actually a Tom 😀

  21. I moved to LA because of this movie. Some poor, young woman was subjected to my projections. What a learning experience! This movie is such a litmus test for maturity. I now see the movie through Summer's eyes.

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