The Rush: Jason Sudeikis on sports fandom and Ted Lasso improv

As The Rush prepares to enter 2022, we look back on one of our favorite things from 2021… Ted Lasso! Co-creator and star of the show Jason Sudeikis joins Jared on The Rush to talk about his evolution as a sports fan and why he plays it safe on the set of Ted Lasso.

Video Transcript

JASON SUDEIKIS: Ted Lasso experience is something else, I mean, both in the creation of it and-- and the-- sort of the way all the pieces came together. And then, obviously, I can't, you know, not be moved by the response to the show.

JARED QUAY: I love the new year. It's a chance to start over. And who wouldn't want to start over after the last two years we've been through. They were-- how should I say-- they--

- [BLEEP] sucked.

JARED QUAY: Yeah, but there were some great sports moments over the last two years. And one thing that kept my spirits up in 2020 and 2021 was Ted Lasso.

- Yeah, I'm just kidding. My man, Nate, here on the horn.

- You're a godsend, Ted Lasso.

- [CHUCKLES] Takes one, no one.

JARED QUAY: Season three is expected to drop at 2022, so I'm already pumped for the new year. It'll be a good year.

- [? See, ?] see you year later.

- Oh!

- Yes. Yes.

JARED QUAY: Not too long ago, we got to hang out on Zoom, of course, with the co-creator and star of the show, Jason Sudeikis. Here he is, revealing some secrets about himself and the show. Check it out.

JASON SUDEIKIS: Hey, if I'm being honest, I think I would fall under a fair weather sports fan, just because of work and-- and-- and just having a-- a hectic, you know, wonky schedule. Like-- like the time I-- I think I was most dedicated to like watching the Kansas Jayhawks was when I was a young kid in like the '80s and '90s, growing up in Kansas.

But then when I was working on SNL because, at least, there I had like Monday through Saturday job, you know, I had time that I knew I was going to be in my dressing room and I could almost schedule my-- my life around, you know, when a game was going to be on.

Nowadays, I-- I just don't have the opportunity to do that-- you know, a five and seven-year-old and a big old television production waits for no man, you know? So it's like-- so-- so, you know, I love going to see games in person.

You know, I went to go-- went to SoFi stadium and saw the Rams and play the Buccaneers and that was great an amazing stadium I'm looking forward to going to see the Nets at their home opener on Sunday night.

So for me getting out and going to see a game or sitting around watching with friends is-- is always-- is-- is always the best. Because, you know, I've always been drawn to teams and working in ensembles.

Part of the reason I did sketch and improv growing up, as part of the reason I love working in TV and film, because it is such an ensemble mind, you know, art and going to watch games is the same way for me. Like you know the more the merrier.

Not too much improv, I mean, a little bit here and there. But we-- we try to be real-- real intentional about what's going on there. I mean, maybe a joke here or there. I mean, there's definitely past writing like, you know-- like the day of.

But-- but it's all-- it;s all written. I usually take a script and then do a lot of rewrites, you know, by hand, which, again, is just a-- a knack that I developed at SNL. Because everything is done by hand there with cue cards and whatnot. And so-- and it's so, you know, last second.

And I think that's probably comes a little bit from like the former athlete in me, too, where it's like, yeah, you just got to--

JARED QUAY: Oh, man.

JASON SUDEIKIS: [INAUDIBLE] what's going on by the team-- by the other team. Like, oh, that's-- that's their defensive set. OK, we'll call a time out. Let's go. Let's run this play. But they're going to-- you know, it's like little-- little, you know, not to be too sloppy with my metaphors. But I think that all wins so it's less about improv.

I always get worried about improv. I always think about the guy or gal holding the boom mic. And when you're just like making up stuff, they're just like, just let me go home. Let me set this thing down. My shoulders hurt man. Come on. Less funny-- it was funny for the first minute. This-- the last five minutes is not funny, and my arms are shaking.