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I THINK I LOVE MY WIFE

About The Origins
Comedian (not to mention family man) Chris Rock has long been fascinated by the angst surrounding the hot-button topics of marriage, fidelity and the battle of the sexes – and has made it prime territory for his unique brand of comedy. So when he recently encountered a film considered a true classic on the subject of married life's frustrations and temptations -- Eric Rohmer's internationally acclaimed CHLOE IN THE AFTERNOON – he was struck with a typically irreverent thought: why not transform this serious French story of human foibles and moral dilemmas into a far edgier American comedy?

"I like to find things that aren't that funny and then make them funny,” comments Rock.

A witty, elegant but very, very French character study, CHLOE IN THE AFTERNOON presented the story of a happily married Parisian man who loved to daydream about other women but never even entertained the idea of actually being unfaithful, until his old acquaintance Chloe dropped by his office and began to seduce him. Part of a series by New Wave cinema pioneer Rohmer entitled "Six Moral Tales,” the film probed the fuzzy lines between fantasy and infidelity and between real commitment and the hunger for instant excitement.

Rock thought it would be interesting to do the same, but in his own inimitable and fearless way. Thus was born I THINK I LOVE MY WIFE. For Rock, the film was a chance not only to tell the humor-filled truth about the pitfalls and pratfalls of married life but also an opportunity to shine a little ray of hope on the state of modern matrimony. "Marriage can be a beautiful, beautiful thing,” Rock muses. "Let's root for love.”

Of course, he knew that many would laugh at the very idea of comedian Chris Rock taking on French auteur Eric Rohmer, or at least see it as a major risk. "Everybody was ‘are you nuts?'” Rock recalls. "But I said, ‘I can do this.'”

To bring a fresh, contemporary and decidedly comedic perspective to Rohmer's tale, Rock turned to his frequent collaborator and fellow comedian Louis C.K., who, like Rock, is married with children – and has a lot to say about the potential disasters that can come with that status. Louis C.K.'s own comical take on marriage recently came to the fore in his decidedly frank, controversial HBO sitcom about a working-class couple, "Lucky Louie.”

"I sent Louis the Erich Rohmer movie, and he loved it,” remembers Rock. In fact, C.K. not only loved the movie but saw in it the potential for him and Rock to really go to town with a subject close to both their savagely funny minds. "This was a great story for us because I think Chris and I both share a certain realism about marriage. We know that it's a mixture of hope and despair, a constant fluctuation between the two,” C.K. observes.

He continues: "It's a subject that's very universal and timeless. To me, I THINK I LOVE MY WIFE isn't really about infidelity – it's about testing one's ability to stay with one of the toughest things in the world, which is marriage with kids. I think married people can look at this material and find a safe place to acknowledge the miseries of marriage and parenthood -- but laugh at it at the same time.”

In fact, both Rock and C.K. note that there haven't been very many comedies geared to the current generation that tackle the touchier, more trouble-prone side of marriage. And yet, it is very much on people's minds, especially as more and more young people become parents. "I think guys are starting to take a really long look at who they are as married men and as fathers,” says Louis C.K. "So the idea of Chris being in a movie like this was really compelling. The character of Richard thinks he's kind of got life figured out, but then this woman shows up and says ‘maybe you're sort of dying early without realizing it. Maybe you're not really living your life.' It's ev

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