Despite ‘Tusk’ underperforming at the box office, fan favorite filmmaker Kevin Smith is still hard at work on his True North Trilogy. At this year’s New York Comic Con, the ‘Clerks’ director announced the third chapter of his series titled ‘Moose Jaws’ (which is exactly what it sounds like apparently). But before we get there, we’ll be seeing ‘Yoga Hosers’, Smith’s version of a superhero movie starring his daughter Harley Quinn Smith and Johnny Depp’s daughter Lily-Rose Depp as two young Manitoba convenience store workers that join forces with a legendary man-hunter to battle an ancient evil.
Earlier this month, The Hollywood Reporter debuted the first image from the ‘Tusk’ spinoff (as seen above) while the film is on a brief hiatus as they wait for Johnny Depp to finish ‘Alice In Wonderland 2,’ but we had a chance to speak with Smith about working with his teenage daughter on set at NYCC. On this season of ‘Comic Book Men’ on AMC, Harley visited the guys at Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash in Red Bank, NJ to try her hand at clerking, but her proud papa reports that she’s much better suited for a career in entertainment instead of sales:
“She’s better on set. [Laughs] She’s not a very good clerk. She’s got too big a heart. Says things like, ‘Can’t we just give things away for free?’ No! That’s not business. But she’s great on set, man. Even on the set of [‘Comic Book Men’]. We did that right before we started shooting ‘Yoga Hosers’, so it was kinda like a dry run for her. ‘Yoga Hosers’ was even better because there was a script, so you know what you’re doing. In this world, there is no script. You literally get thrown into the room and you start generating material or else you’re not in the show. I was very happy that she swam. She could have easily been drowned out by everyone else, but she held her own and made some jokes. It was fun to watch. And after we did it, I knew that we’d have no problem with ‘Yoga Hosers’.
It was a very cool thing to see my kid on the show. I was watching the first cut of the episode with Harley and there’s a shot of her and I at the podcast table in a two shot talking to each other. Same thing that I do every day with my kid, but generally nothing is capturing that image. So there I am looking at myself talking to my kid on the set of ‘Comic Book Men’ surrounded by my friends and I was fucking thunderstruck by the notion that this kid came out of my balls and here we are having a conversation on television. It’s fucking strange! My wife is not a ‘Comic Book Men’ watcher because she’s like, “I live with you, Kevin. I don’t need to watch you on television.” She watched that episode though and absolutely loved it. ‘Oh my god, Harley’s great! She’s funny and she’s cute.’ When I ask what about me, she says, ‘ You’re fine.’”
Smith then went on to share some of his proud papa moments from the set of his latest feature. And in typical Kevin Smith fashion, he went on a slight tangent, but this one might make you wish that anyone was half as proud of you as this man is of his daughter:
“Over and over again for me. I had constant proud papa moments the whole time. There was one moment… I don’t direct. I’m not one of those guys who’s like, ‘You’re a gazelle and these people are lions. But you think you’re a lion too. Act!’ I don’t direct like that. Basically I say go do it. Do what you’re gonna do and we’ll talk about it after. So they go shoot and then I bring them back and show them the take on the monitor. I’ll say this is in the movie, this is in the movie, this we’re going to do one more time to grab that line again. I like this look can you give me that twice? And then the performer will go, ‘Can I do this, this, and this?’ and I’d say, ‘Oh yeah! Absolutely!’ So I’ve done that with everybody that I’ve ever worked with, except in ‘Clerks’ because we didn’t have video assist monitors. From ‘Mallrats’ forward, I had that same moment with so many people. And there was a moment where I had that on ‘Yoga Hosers’ with my kid and she left. I’ve had that conversation with Jason Mewes, Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Chris Rock, fucking Alan Rickman, and even Bruce Willis, but my kid didn’t take a swing at me afterwards. It was strange to see that she was old enough to be in this world and I’m talking to her like a performer, not as her dad.
I am not by any stretch of the imagination what you would call arrogant or egocentric, but I am aware about who I am. I know that a long time ago I did something different and it put me in a different world that I was never meant to be in. From where I was born to where I am in life, I’ve done okay. So most days I’m very satisfied to look at myself as the hero of my own story as the guy who got his ass up, made ‘Clerks’, and changed his life. It doesn’t make me feel like I’m better than people. That’s how I can walk around being this fat. I don’t go, “Oh look at what a fat piece of shit I am.” I can go, “I’m the fat piece of shit that made ‘Clerks’.”
So in that moment, I’m sitting there watching the kid after she walked away and heads back to act in the scene and then it hit me like a ton of bricks, man. None of this has been about me whatsoever. ‘He made ‘Chasing Amy’ and he made ‘Dogma’ and he made ‘Jay and Silent Bob Strikes Back’. He got beat up for making ‘Jersey Girl’, but he came back with ‘Clerks II’.’ This fucking epic tale that I tried to shape out of my whole life is nothing but preface to the real adventure. The real story and the real hero is her. All the shit that I’ve done for twenty years is not about me accomplishing things. It was just me practicing for the moment where I stood across from my fifteen year old daughter on a set with millions of dollars at bay and I could communicate with her what needed to be done and she could understand it and go off to do it professionally. At that point, I realized that I’m not the hero of this story. I’m the dude in ‘Game of Thrones’ who teaches Arya how to sword fight with the wooden stick. You think he’s a badass, but then he’s fucking dead and that’s it. You never see him again and it’s her fucking story. That’s kinda what I realized. It’s not about me. It’s always been about this and her story begins. So that really makes you feel small.”
Say what you will about his movies or about the man himself, but you cannot deny that Kevin Smith loves his daughter. So as you’re basking in that warm feeling you got from reading that, let us know what you think about Harley Quinn Smith starring alongside Lily-Rose Depp in ‘Yoga Hosers’ in the comment section below.