'This Is 40' hits theaters this weekend

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By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey
By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey
By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey
By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey
By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

PHOENIX – For many folks, hitting the “Big 4-0” is no laughing matter. But the new comedy “This is 40” certainly manages to find the humor in love, life, marriage and middle age!

Good Morning Arizona’s Javier Soto sat down with funnyman Judd Apatow, who not only wrote and directed the film, but cast his real-life wife and kids to play starring roles. Paul Rudd stars as the male lead.

Apatow talked to us about the semi-sequel to 2007’s bawdy comedy “Knocked Up”. He says this new movie is a tale of a couple trying to cope with turning 40 while raising a family and working on their marriage.

“It’s heightened because it's the week they are both turning 40, and they melt down and have a nervous breakdown,” Apatow says.

If you think you recognize the characters in “This is 40”, it's because you met them a few years ago.  Debbie and Pete are spin-offs from the movie “Knocked Up.”  And even though they’re still bickering, some things have changed.

“I just try to think of it as their own movie,” Apatow tells us. “There were these great characters from Knocked Up, but I was really starting from scratch.”

Apatow’s wife off-screen is actress Leslie Mann, who plays Debbie.  She told Scott Pasmore on Good Morning Arizona that making the movie was lots of fun.

“It’s like being at home. It literally is like being at home,” Mann says. “So much fun; we have such a good time together.

But getting daughters Maude and Iris to listen to director dad was not always an easy task.

“They don’t listen to him. They could care less about what he has to say,” Mann tells us, laughing. “They have their own opinions; they have their own ideas about how they want to shoot a scene. And if they want to take a nap or something, they’ll just go take a nap.”

“This is 40” opens this weekend. It also stars  Albert Brooks, John Lithgow, Megan Fox and Lena Dunham. The movie is rated R.