Will Ferrell and Adam McKay talk to Terry Gross about what motivated them to write anchorman and stray from the “rules” or comedy:
McKay: We just love the ensemble comedy where you don’t know where the jokes are coming from, and the idea of a dense movie that you want to watch over and over again. … When we wrote the first Anchorman we talked about those old ensemble comedies like Stripes and Animal House and Caddyshack, and how no one was doing those anymore, so the idea of like four funny guys in the lead with Christina Applegate was fun for us.
Ferrell: I think when Adam and I met on Saturday Night Live and started working together, you’re surrounded by writers who have all these rules, and I think when we decided we would write a feature one day, we were really rebelling against all these rules — the three-act structure and how you can’t do this and this has to be set up in a certain way. The original Anchorman was kind of function of wanting to break through all of that.