A Q&A with Extract director Mike Judge

Mike Judge has a great ear for dialogue, something that’s apparent in both the boneheaded Beavis and Butthead ’toon he scripted for MTV and in the redneck-themed animated series King of the Hill. While his latest film Extract, didn’t exactly go head-to-head with the latest Judd Apatow project when it came out over the summer, it was a very funny parody that starred Jason Bateman as a vanilla-extract factory owner with some serious problems at home and at the workplace. In advance of the DVD’s December 22 release, Judge phoned in from his Los Angeles home yesterday to talk about the movie and his career as both an animator and filmmaker.

I know that you’ve worked in factory settings before. But at what point did you decide you’d want to make a movie about a factory?
I’m trying to remember which came first. I had the idea about a female character who’s a bit of a sociopath. Then, I had the idea about the guy in a marriage and the gigolo. I liked watching bottling mechanisms run and hadn’t seen that in anything for a while, probably since Laverne and Shirley. I wanted to do something from the boss’s point of view. There used to be this great factory, the Adams Extract factory — when you drive from Austin to San Antonio. It was a cool ’50s looking building. I even took a tour of it. So I wanted to do that for a while. I had toured the Miller brewery in Milwaukee when I was a musician and they sponsored this guy I was playing with.

Like this story?
SCENE Supporters make it possible to tell the Cleveland stories you won’t find elsewhere.
Become a supporter today.

Jeff Niesel

Jeff has been covering the Cleveland music scene for more than 20 years now. And on a regular basis, he tries to talk to whatever big acts are coming through town, too. If you're in a band that he needs to hear, email him at [email protected].
Scroll to read more Movie Reviews & Stories articles

Join Cleveland Scene Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.