Jason Sudeikis on the Origins of Led Tasso, and Will We See Ted Lasso Alter-Ego Again?
”To play that type of aggro anger without swearing — it’s just a fun little mental gymnastics,“ the actor tells TheWrap
Everyone loves “Ted Lasso,” but will fans of the Apple TV+ comedy take to his lunatic alter-ego, Led Tasso? We’ll find out this weekend, but also, yes.
Sudeikis credits fellow series co-creator and writer Brendan Hunt, who plays Coach Beard on the show and in the digital shorts that preceded it, with refreshing his memory on the original concept for the Ted Lasso character. Years later, that first idea turned into the streaming version’s introduction of Led Tasso.
“This is one of the reasons I like pairing up with Brendan…because he has a tremendous memory when it comes to these things. That move — like the angry, aggro-coach — is kind of what the original spots NBC Sports and the ad company that had the idea had in mind, and that was something that I didn’t necessarily want to do,” Sudeikis told TheWrap. “I don’t think it would have been funny in the first season because we’re still establishing and wanting to maintain this tone of who [Ted] was.”
In case you’ve been sleeping under a mountain of soccer balls, the tone for the title character is essentially nicest-guy-in-the-world.
Sudeikis also didn’t want to debut Led Tasso in the Season 2 premiere episode, he said, opting instead to have a “few” Season 2 episodes under their belts before unleashing this monster on the sizable audience for the Apple comedy.
(If you think viewership on “Ted Lasso” is large, you should see the number of Emmy nominations Season 1 recently received.)
So Led Tasso was (re-)born in the writers room for Season 2 as “an alternate tactic for Ted” as the soccer team he leads continues to struggle on the field. With AFC Richmond’s new team psychologist Dr. Sharon Fieldstone (Sarah Niles) taking over Coach Lasso’s normal approach of “dealing with the person and the emotion directly,” as Sudeikis put it, Ted “had to come up with something else.”
That meant blacking out and going to a dark place, despite Coach Beard’s pleas against the idea.
Sudeikis said that shooting his scenes as the high-volume Led Tasso was “a fun day” — even if it damn near ruined his voice. “To try to play that type of aggro anger without swearing — it’s just a fun little mental gymnastics one has to do,” he said.
And it sounds like fans can expect to see more Led Tasso in the future.
“We try to use the whole buffalo, we try to come back to things. Nothing ever dies. People might die, but nothing ever dies on the show with the way we sort of look at it,” Sudeikis said. “I’m a big fan of creating a universe and pulling from that universe. It’s like having a drawer in your dresser that has all your old concert t-shirts that you forgot about because you haven’t worn them in three to five years and you go shopping at your house, being like, ‘Oh, yo, I forgot about this Ben Folds Five t-shirt!’”
Ben Folds merch would be a pretty sweet find, yeah. Bye, bye, bye, bye, bye, a new episode of “Ted Lasso” has “Landed” on Apple TV+ on Friday.
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