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Saturday Blockbuster: The Whole Nine Yards

Saturday August 15 at 8.30pm

The Whole Nine Yards

Cast: Matthew Perry, Bruce Willis, Amanda Peet

Director: Jonathan Lynn

It's a comedy about life, love and plenty of ammunition, it's The Whole Nine Yards, starring Matthew Perry and Bruce Willis.

Perry, who is known worldwide as Chandler Bing in the popular TV2 show 'Friends,' stars as Dr. Nicholas Oseransky ("Oz"), an unassuming dentist and all-around nice guy whose life has become unliveable but who has no easy way out of it.

"He's kind of giving up on life," Perry says.

Bruce Willis, star of the highly acclaimed blockbuster 'The Sixth Sense,' plays Jimmy "the Tulip" Tudeski, who moves in next door to Oz in a peaceful Montreal suburb.

A man who has been headline news for ratting out the leader of the notorious Gogolak Gang, Jimmy is hard to kill.

"Jimmy doesn't kill people who are close to him for one reason - he doesn't let anyone get close to him," says Willis. "He would have morals if they didn't interfere with his job."

Oz takes an immediate liking to his neighbour and they become friends even though he has recognized Jimmy as a hit man in hiding.

"It's an intriguing comedy that's full of twists and turns, and surprises," says director Jonathan Lynn ("My Cousin Vinny").

Director Jonathan Lynn credits Bruce Willis with generating a creative, collaborative environment on-set.

"Bruce is as extraordinary an actor as you would expect from someone who has been at the top for so long," Lynn says. "I also knew from his days with 'Moonlighting' that he could be outrageously funny. What I discovered is that he's a totally unselfish actor. During our rehearsal periods he would take me aside and say, 'Have you noticed that Matthew's doing a wonderful thing here,' or 'Amanda's got that terrific moment there.' He wanted to make sure that everybody else in the film looked good."

The actors and director alike approached the production with an eye toward allowing for spontaneous improvisation to enrich the script.

"I think Matthew came up with most of the ideas for these falls," Lynn says. "I wouldn't have suggested some of the things he did and quite frankly thought they might be dangerous. He seems to be made of rubber because he somehow doesn't hurt himself in all of this. He's a charming leading actor and very attractive, but he's also an immensely talented clown."

More challenging for Perry was how to star opposite an actor as popular and accomplished as Bruce Willis.

"He's the first big star that I've worked with, so I was kind of intimidated," Perry recalls. "I wasn't sure how the dynamic would work but he got a kick out of being funny again. So, the dynamic became: whoever comes up with the funniest joke wins. Every day we would come in and pitch things, which was really cool."