Aca-Scuse me? A common reaction from Pitch Perfect fans after news broke of a streaming series spinoff centering on Adam Devine’s Bumper looking to realize his dream. Flula Borg, who played European rival Pieter Kramer, was excited to get the callback.
In Pitch Perfect: Bumper in Berlin, Kramer is now the disgraced former leader of the German acapella group Das Sound Machine. He is dumped by his girlfriend Gisela (Jameela Jamil) and estranged from family members including sis Lina “DJ Das Boot” (Lera Abova). Excommunicated from the singing world, he becomes Bumper’s talent manager ahead of the Unity Festival in hopes of getting back in the game and clearing his name.
Here Borg chats about the first season and hopes for the future.
How much fun did you have riding in Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade alongside Adam and Sarah [Hyland]?
Flula Borg: As a German man, this is a very confusing thing. It’s like when my grandfather would say, “Let’s hang out at the Super Bowl.” Having no idea what it is, this was the same thing. It was such a wonderful surprise. I thought it would be two automobiles and a snowman. It was millions of people and all these big balloons. It was amazing.
What was your reaction when asked about reprising your role from Pitch Perfect 2 as part of a continuing Peacock series?
I was so extremely excited. Let’s assume you have some MC Hammer pants that you do the running man in. Then you put a Twinkie in them and put them in a closet. Then eight years later you look at those pants and put them on and are like, “Wow, a Twinkie!” That was what it felt like. It was such a wonderful, delicious surprise. I said yes immediately because of all the wonderful people working on this between Elizabeth Banks, Max Handelman, and Megan Amram, our showrunner. It was a zero-brainer to say yes to this.
It must have also been a bonus that you’re able to show how beautiful Germany is.
It is wonderful because we are playing some tropes of Germany that are fun, some not real, and some that are insane. In the end, it is nice to introduce people to the beauty of the landscape and the great people and a really fun time. I think that is the most important part of the show. It allows people to turn off their brains, take away from the politics and heaviness of the world and enjoy some craziness.
What was it like to dig a little deeper into Pieter’s backstory?
It was great to give Pieter some depth and some onion layers, which I thought was very fun. It also gives this Terminator 2: Judgement Day where you’re like, “Arnold Schwarzenegger is the bad guy. No, wait. He is good but has problems.” That was fun for me to play.
What did you think of Jameela’s German accent?
I love Jameela very much. Full disclosure, she developed her German accent by watching videos of me. So for me, it wasn’t funny as much as it was me going, “Oh wow, it’s a mirror.” Me of course as a girl with long hair.
How was it reconnecting with Adam on this particular set?
It was wonderful. We’ve worked together on other projects like Workaholics and other things. It was nice to really hang out. All these other times were short times, so it was nice to have some more time together.
Lera is among the new faces and standouts as your onscreen sister Lina. What do you make of her relationship with Pieter and how Bumper ultimately brings them together?
I think people would assume my character is a big badass but he is the ding-dong of the family. She is the one that has all the talent and the charisma. It was wonderful to work against that. It was nice they had this shared goal of making Bumper explode career-wise. It was nice for us to become a tag team like John Candy and Steve Martin in Planes, Trains and Automobiles, except only one of us was a man.
What was your favorite part of this experience?
Hard to say, but I absolutely loved watching the performances and getting to perform. Seeing new people within this franchise. Seeing Sarah, Lera, all entered the world of Pitch Perfect was very fun to be a part of.
Who doesn’t love a little “99 Red Balloons.” But you can’t forget Katharina [Thalbach], who was a scene-stealer too.
She stole the whole series. She was unbelievable
If there is a Season 2, what do you want to see next for Pieter now that he has this fresh start?
If I’m being honest, I would love him to play the Danny Glover character in Lethal Weapon where he is like, “I’m too old for this, but I’m doing it anyway.” I would love to see Pieter perform again but honestly just getting to work with this cast again would be a wonderful gift of adventure and dopeness.
Any songs you all sang that didn’t make the cut?
No, but in my dreams, we would be doing anything by C+C Music Factory, Young MC, or Ice Cube. Those are my dreams for the next season.
Would like everyone to stay in Germany or go to the States where Pieter is introducing Bumper to everything?
Selfishly I would like to eat more German food. So if we stay in Germany that would really help me consume the most delicious calories in the world. But wherever we go I would be very excited.
Do you think we’ve seen the last of Gisela and Pieter or is there hope for the two?
I really hope this is the German version of When Harry Met Sally…That we see more as the years come on.
It was a nice surprise to see you pop up as a bartender in The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special.
I’m so lucky I met James Gunn on The Suicide Squad playing Javelin. This was a very wonderful surprise that they allowed me to play the bartender. I am now excited to be part of the MCU. I’m looking forward to my action figures. I hope those sell like hotcakes.
Where are you on the DC or Marvel debate? Do you have to have an allegiance?
I’m a James Gunn guy. I could care less where we go. If you work with him, it doesn’t matter because it will be a fun and wonderful adventure.
Holidays are coming up. Do you have any traditions to share?
Absolutely! I did it this morning. I’m very jetlagged, so at 2 a.m. this morning I set up my tree while listening to and watching Die Hard.
Pitch Perfect: Bumper in Berlin, Season 1, Streaming Now, Peacock