Director Of New Film St. Vincent Hilariously Explains How He Got Bill Murray To Do The Film

At the San Diego Film Festival last weekend, Theodore Melfi gave one of the best Q&A's to ever be given, sharing with the audience the details of how he nabbed the elusive Bill Murray for St. Vincent—his debut feature film that only took him around four weeks to write. While he chatted about the origins of the story (it's inspired by members of his own family, including his young daughter) and sang the praises of the entire cast (especially Melissa McCarthy), the big stories of the night revolved around Murray. Melfi shared a conversation he had with Murray the night before shooting began, when the eccentric actor suddenly decided that he would be doing an accent for the movie. Check out the best stories below (they may be long, but they're worth it), as told verbatim by Melfi, and join us in hoping that Melfi will turn his meeting with Bill Murray into a movie itself:

Tracking Bill Murray Down Via the Secret 800 Number & Ted's Epic Memorial Day Weekend

Melfi: I think by now everyone knows that Bill Murray has an 800 number. He doesn't have a manager or an agent, he has an 800 number. It's not an urban legend. You can't reach him outside of calling that 800 number and his voice isn't on the 800 number, it's just a "You have reached SkyTel voicemail, press five to leave a message." I got the number from a friend of mine who produced Lost in Translation, Fred Roos [...]. I thought, "I got an in." I call Fred and say, "Fred, I need to get a hold of Bill." He goes, "I have an 800 number." So I just leave dozens and dozens of messages on the 800 number, not knowing if any message ever got to him and it's like Swingers, where you leave the message and you erase it and you start having an affair with this message machine.

Over the course of two months, I put in my calendar, "Call Bill. Call Bill. Call Bill." Finally, like, two or three weeks after leaving messages, [I thought], "I gotta find a better way," so I called his attorney, who's the only contact he has in Hollywood—he doesn't live in Hollywood [...], he hates Hollywood. And so I call his attorney and I say, "David, I'm trying to get this script to Bill, I don't know what to do here." "Well, what number do you have?" "I have the 800 number." He goes, "Well, that's what I have."