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Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader in "The Skeleton Twins"
Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader in "The Skeleton Twins"Courtesy of Sony Pictures UK

Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader are the new Romy & Michele

The Saturday Night Live alums take it in turns to play dentist in new comedy The Skeleton Twins

If you leave Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig alone in a room together, they're bound to end up conducting a symphony of fart noises. "That was just Kris and I messing around," laughs Hader of all the time spent in a dentist's office farting around with his BFF and former Saturday Night Live costar, 'Kris'. "That’s very Kris and mine's sensibility." Post SNL, they've teamed up for The Skeleton Twins – a comedy about twins estranged for a decade and reunited under unlikely circumstances: both attempt to take their own lives on the same day. Making up for lost time, the duo begin to get on like a house on fire, lip-synching to momentous Starship tunes and, in one scene, dressing up like "a dead 50s airline stewardess with a big hairdo," laughs Hader. "I got to keep that dress!" Here, the tag team talk about their ROFL dentist visit and how they couldn't keep it together during a certain SNL sketch.

You cracked up in the Super Showcase sketch with Maya Rudolph. What made you lose it?

Kristen Wiig: When we read through the sketch, I laughed through it. Before dress rehearsal, I was like, 'Okay, I’m getting all my laughter out now, we're about to go on air.' But every time the same things made me laugh. It was just the ridiculousness of the scene, the opening lines between Carl and Vonda, and just the way we were talking. It was so mine and Maya’s sense of humour. 

Is it nerve-wracking when you lose it on set?

Kristen Wiig: It's obviously fun but afterwards I get mad at myself because once I start laughing I usually can't pull it together.

Bill Hader: I honestly don’t remember that! I do so many sketches that the only time I see them is when I'm on a talk show and they show it. Afterwards, people will come up to me and be like ‘Hey!’ and quote something and I’ll be like, ‘What are you saying?’ and they’ll be like, ‘You said that!’ and I’m like, 'I really don’t remember.'

Do you and Bill feel like brother and sister in a way?

Kristen Wiig: We do have a brother and sister thing going on. We’ve known each other ten years and we’re really close. Also going through seven seasons on SNL together really brings you close to someone.

Do you have any brotherly dirt?

Kristen Wiig: (laughs) No! I’d never do that, no.

What was an unforgettable moment on set that cracked you up?

Kristen Wiig: I would probably say the scene in the dentist’s office was the most silly. We ran around the room making each other laugh, picking up things on set and the camera-men followed us around. It was just one of the most fun scenes to shoot.

Bill Hader: Yeah that was very reminiscent of our time on Saturay Night Live, that’s the kinda stuff we would do, mess around and make each other laugh. It was a day with (director) Craig Johnson where it was like ‘do what ever you want’. That was one of the funniest days of the whole shoot in the denist office, there's a lot of stuff that got cut out.

How much of that was improv?

Kristen Wiig: I think we improvised that specifically, although the scene had dialog. Craig just said, ‘Go for it’.

Bill Hader: I remember a part where we’re trying to talk to each other on the phone and I was pushing her on a chair down a hallway. There’s just a lot of shit like that, the only thing that really made it in were the fart noises and the braces.

“I remember a part where I was pushing her on a chair down a hallway but the only thing that really made it in were the fart noises and the braces” – Bill Hader

A lot of the plot centres on Milo's relationship with his old professor. How realistic do you think that is?

Bill Hader: I don’t know if that happens so much. It is a really tough thing that happens and it's very inappropriate, but from the character's standpoint it was like the person he fell in love with and the first person to tell him he was good at something, which is a big deal. And that’s what he wants, he just wants that validation from Rich, even if he has to lie to get it – that’s what pathetic about it. I like that in over movies that would have been the whole movie but with this it's kind of just a part of their life that happened to this guy.

Have you ever had a school crush on any of your school teachers?

Bill Hader: No!

You've played Stefon and Tony DiNato on SNL. Do you feel really comfortable playing gay characters?

Bill Hader: It didn’t occur to me, he was just a great character. It wasn’t like, ‘Oh, another gay character, lets do that.’ It was more that he was just a really well-written character. It was a lot of fun playing Milo and what I liked about the script was that him being gay had nothing to do with the issues he had to deal with.

You both break into a hilarious lip sync bit to Starship's "Nothing's Gonna Stop Us Now". Have you always been a fan of Starship?

Kristen Wiig: Oh yeah! I mean have you seen Mannequin? That’s all Craig, I don’t know how he ended up picking that song but it was definitely a good choice.

Bill Hader: It was only two lines in the script, it wasn’t a big thing, you could have read right past it, but it was a lot of fun. We shot that later in the schedule so everyday from the beginning of shooting, on the way to the set, I was listening to that Starships song.

Did you know it before hand?

Bill Hader: I did know it but not enough to sing and dance along to it, so I had to listen to it a lot. The day that we shot it, Craig brought us down to the living room and said, ‘Right, so here's the piano if you wanna do a piano. You can jump up on this chair if you wanna do that.' Chris had ideas, and even Luke (Wilson) and the photographer had ideas that we ended up using. It was all a fun collaboration but I will say that the dance moves are mine.

So was it your idea to hop on the piano and do that little synthy bit? 

Bill Hader: That was Craig's idea, he was like, ‘You can jump on piano if you want to.'

Besides Starship, what other bands would your character Milo enjoy?

Bill Hader: He had a lot of t-shirts like Grizzly Bear, Flaming Lips and Sonic Youth. I’m sure he liked Joy Division and New Order too.

Skeleton Twins is out on November 7