Making “The Odd Couple” was a producer’s dream come true. We were a group of people who knew and liked each other, and worked well together, determined to have fun making a funny film. There’s something for everyone. The only message is that you should laugh and be happy and enjoy one of the cleverest comedies Neil Simon (or anyone else) has every written.
“The Odd Couple” is contemporary comedy in the truest sense; Contemporary because it deals with conflicts and situations specific to our times; and comedy because it’s funny, very funny. And at the nucleus of this beautiful humor is a striking familiarity, a sense that we have experienced all this before in our own lives. This is the film’s magic - it touches upon the personal and the human. The characters are real, with Jack Lemmon giving his finest performance since “The Apartment: as the poignant yet hysterical Felix, and Walter Matthau recreating his Tony Award role from Broadway as Oscar, “The Modern American Male.”
With the masterful direction of Gene Saks, and the music of Neal Hefti, one of the top contemporary composers in the field today, you have what I referred to as a “Producer’s Dream.” In fact, honestly, I start feeling quite guilty when I think of getting paid for having so much fun . . . but please don’t wake me up!
Howard W. Koch