America’s favorite anchorman is back with his starched suit, camera-ready hair and that baritone voice.
And now Will Ferrell is revealing the man who helped bring Ron Burgundy to life, veteran anchorman Mort Crim.
In the new issue of Rolling Stone magazine, Ferrell says he found inspiration while watching Crim in a Lifetime documentary on pioneering journalist Jessica Savitch.
“At one point, they were talking to this anchor, Mort Crim, who was basically saying, ‘I was an (profanity) to her,’” Ferrell told the magazine. “What made me laugh was watching him. He still spoke like this … He still used his on-camera voice.”
“Well you have to understand,” Crim explained of his behavior in the documentary about Savitch. “That I was a typical traditional 1972 male chauvinist anchor.”
Crim, 78, who co-anchored with Savitch at KYW-TV in Philadelphia, says he “did not take any offense” at Ferrell’s comedic interpretation of himself.
“You know comedy and satire and parody is nothing but taking a grain of truth and stretching it out to an absolutely ridiculous conclusion,” the retired anchorman told ABC News. “And I think that’s what they have done very skillfully in ‘Anchorman,’ and I enjoyed it immensely.”
Now an author and voiceover artist, Crim says the movie holds true to life as a journalist in the 1970s.
“I think they’ve done an excellent job of taking some real situations, some real tensions that existed and squeezed the humor out of them,” he said.
This weekend, the real anchorman is heading to New York City for the premiere of “Anchorman 2″ and is set to meet Ron Burgundy for the first time.
“Not only will it be my first time to meet Will Ferrell, but more importantly, it’ll be his first time to meet me,” Crim quipped.