“My goal was to make a film that was just as funny as my other two films, but which also dug a lot deeper and was not afraid to be more emotional,” Judd Apatow has told Roger Ebert. “We didn’t put anything in the film just to be funny — it also had to get at the truth of this type of situation. It was very scary because I am so used to letting the laugh count guide me as to whether or not the movie is working well. Sometimes this movie is working really well when there are no laughs. That’s new for me. I prefer to hear noises from the crowd wall-to-wall to make me sleep better at night.”

Apatow also says he’s always had “a good ear for writing in the voice of the comics I was writing jokes for, but it took me decades to believe my own point of view would be interesting to people. I could never believe that comics would allow me into their world. The hard part about writing this movie was the fact that the comedians I wrote for were very nice to me. Nothing dramatic ever happened.”