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Casting The Comedy
For the roles of Augie and Ronnie, the two boys who are chosen as most compatible for the new mentors, the filmmakers cast two adept young performers: Christopher Mintz-Plasse of Superbad as Augie and newcomer Bobb'e J. Thompson as Ronnie.

Mintz-Plasse's Augie is a lonely, awkward high-school kid whose guidance counselor signs him up with the Sturdy Wings program in the hopes that he can meet a mentor to tutor him on the way to becoming a man. What he gets, however, is the bitter, disaffected Danny who, initially, has next to no interest in getting to know his new little brother.

Wain says, "We all saw Chris in Superbad and thought ‘Oh my God, who is that kid? He is unbelievable.' Then you hear all these stories of how they found him on MySpace, and you think that he may be a fluke, that he was playing himself. But he is a really great actor with lots of skills. He came in and created a completely different character and knocked it out of the park.”

Thompson's Ronnie is a brash fifth grader who talks more trash and thinks he can party harder than Wheeler. He also takes great delight in harassing Danny, accusing him of being Ben Affleck (or a character from one of his movies) at every step. "Bobb'e is just filled with so much charisma, and he is so funny on- and off-screen. Every time the camera rolls, he does something different, and he will blow you away each time.”

Playing the female leads in Role Models are two comic actors who happened to co-star with Paul Rudd in The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Elizabeth Banks and Jane Lynch. Lynch (Rudd's sex-hungry electronics store boss in Virgin) was cast to play Sweeny, the former addict and founder of Sturdy Wings who is responsible for overseeing the mentorship of Danny and Wheeler. Banks (Steve Carell's endlessly adventurous date in Virgin) came on board to play Danny's weary girlfriend, Beth, the attorney who barters the deal to spare the errant salesmen jail time.

Though Sweeny's Sturdy Wings is intended to serve as a guidance center for youth who need a big brother or sister to help mentor them, Danny and Wheeler do their fair share of growing up with their charges. The writers conceived the character of Sweeny for Jane Lynch and realized that if she weren't interested in accepting the job, they would have to rewrite the character. Fortunately, their gamble paid off.

Lynch liked what was written for her and saw the raw comedy in the character. She laughs, "Sweeny misuses words. She gets her metaphors all goofed up and isn't always linear in her thinking. Sometimes, she's all over the place, and that, of course, drives Danny nuts because he's so smart and logical. Here's this woman with this power that she's created for herself, and he has to put up with it and listen to her.” Too, she was glad to be a part of another R-rated comedy with some old friends. "When you try to keep within PG, you certainly don't get the good stuff, the gold, when you've got those constraints around yourself. You can't really let go.”

Producer Parent offers of the center's leader: "Jane is so talented, and she brings her unique comedy to creating the role of Sweeny—a character who has obviously been through a lot in her life and thinks, ‘I used to be addicted to pills, and now I'm addicted to helping people.' Sweeny takes all of that energy and channels it to a place of now wanting to do good and help people. But being almost overcommitted and overly passionate makes for a hilarious character.”

The filmmakers needed Danny's girlfriend to be tough, emotional and very funny. She has had it with her complaining boyfriend and has reached the end of her rope. Just as she's breaking up with Danny, Beth has to serve as the guys' attorney to keep them out of prison. The producers and Wain found the intelligence and solid

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