Steve Carell and Jennifer Garner might not seem like the most likely pairing as a married couple, but the two stars have one vitally important thing in common: they both root for the Big Red.
The two stars appear together for the first time in "Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day," the big-screen adaptation of Judith Viorst's beloved 1972 children's book. But their roots go further back. Both actors graduated from Denison University, a small, private liberal arts college in Granville, Ohio. They attended several years apart — Carell graduated in 1984, and Garner earned her degree a decade later — but Garner wanted to make her co-star feel like they were right back on campus while they were filming.
"She has been tormenting me," Carell joked when Yahoo Movies visited the set last September. "We went to Denison University, and she must have bought a truck load of Denison University memorabilia." But Garner revealed that she distributed the shirts, hats, and other items featuring the school's red-and-white colors to all the members of the film crew without telling her fellow alum. "So I'll go a whole day and then realize the entire camera crew has Denison University gear on," Carell said. "I'm so unobservant."
Apparently, Carell couldn't spot his own alma mater's logo when it was right in from of him. "Just the other night," recounted Garner, "two guys working had Denison written down their legs in sweatpants and they would be talking to Steve..." "And I didn't know!" Carell interrupted. He admitted he relied on Garner to point out when someone was outfitted with Denison merchandise. "At this point," said Garner, "I just feel bad for him and I point it out right away."
The movie casts Carell and Garner as the parents of Anthony (Dylan Minnette), Emily (Kerris Dorsey), and Alexander (Ed Oxenbould), who is having the worst day an 11-year-old can imagine. Then his bad luck spreads to his family, as dad interviews for a new job, big brother takes his driving test, and mom tries to keep them all from falling apart.
Directed by Miguel Arteta ("Cedar Rapids"), "Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day" opens nationwide on Oct. 10.