Dave Collins and Ron Ziskin
Q: How did the concept of doing a remake of The Goodbye Girl come about?
DC: I've known Don Safran for many years. We've been looking to do something together and discussed possible remakes. We set up a lunch with Neil Simon to discuss THE GOODBYE GIRL. I held my breath, waiting to see how he was going to react. Neil thought it was a good idea and wanted to do it.
RZ: Neil has said that he enjoys seeing his work over and over again with new actors. This movie is about reinterpretation of his work through new actors and a new director. We got lucky that he wanted to remake The Goodbye Girl. The doors started opening for us. Warner Bros. was interested, and then TNT said yes to the project. Working with TNT has been a great experience, they do movies right.
Q: Do you think music is important when producing a romantic comedy?
RZ: You can't have a romantic comedy without a love song. It captures what people should feel coming out of this type of film. David Gates of Bread wrote the theme song for The Goodbye Girl. I think it was one of the great love songs of the '70s. What we've done is update the song by kicking it up a notch.
DC: Darius has a wonderful voice. We were thrilled that TNT had stepped up by bringing a big group like Hootie & the Blowfish to re-record the song.
Q: How do you feel about the casting?
DC: Jeff is a very courageous actor to take on a leading role in which a former actor had won the Academy Award. He approached it more from the angle of a leading man than Richard Dreyfuss did. A whole new generation is going to discover THE GOODBYE GIRL. The script is still sensational.
RZ: Jeff and Patricia are both very appealing in their roles. Alan pulls off one of the greatest performances of the film. And we don't want to leave out Hallie Kate Eisenberg. The moment we saw her reading in New York, we knew she could do it. She's a pro.