'Funny People' Judd Apatow and Leslie Mann: A Marriage On-Screen and Off

Judd Apatow and Leslie Mann dish on collaborating on-screen and off.

ByABC News
July 24, 2009, 4:10 PM

July 27, 2009— -- Apatow and his wife, actress Leslie Mann, sat down with ABC News Now's "Popcorn With Peter Travers" to promote Apatow's latest creation, "Funny People," which he wrote, produced and directed, and in which the ubiquitous Mann co-stars. The movie opens nationwide July 31.

Apatow is credited for producing a string of critically and commercially acclaimed comedy blockbusters, including "Talladega Nights," "Superbad," "Step Brothers" and "Pineapple Express." His name is associated with success and, as a result, he gets "credit for a lot of things like Harry Potter," Apatow jokes.

"Funny People," starring Adam Sandler and Seth Rogen, is about a famous yet depressed comedian, George Simmons (Sandler), who, according to Apatow, "gets sick suddenly and realizes he doesn't have friends or family."

George hires Ira Wright (Rogen), a struggling stand-up comic, as his assistant and constant companion. As his disease goes into remission, George's old love, Laura Anderson (Mann), re-enters his life and, along with his near-death experience, inspires him to reassess his life. Apatow credits his fascination with "people who are hungry for success and pay a high price for it" as the inspiration for the film, adding that he has been around too many people "who are sick, who think maybe they haven't been living right and then get better and drift back to the same neurotic life."

Apatow's friendship with Sandler, 42, began when they met as two struggling stand-up comics in their early 20s.