Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill's 'lucky' bromance

Story highlights

  • Channing Tatum says he and Jonah Hill got "lucky" with their friendship
  • The two off-screen friends bring their bond to "22 Jump Street"
  • The comedy sequel opens on June 13

Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill should be sick of each other by now.

And if they weren't really friends off screen, they probably would be.

After filming the surprisingly successful "21 Jump Street" and reteaming for the June 13 follow-up, "22 Jump Street," the two actors have put in countless hours filming and doing press for their projects, the kind of time that could strain any professional relationship.

But as Tatum told CNN at the "22 Jump Street" premiere on Tuesday, these two got "lucky."

"It doesn't always work out like this," Tatum, 34, said. "Sometimes you take a movie because you like someone's work, and then you get to work with them and you don't actually enjoy working with them. And we just got really lucky."

Channing Tatum's X-rated bet

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Channing Tatum loves torturing Jonah Hill

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In the "Jump Street" movies, the pair play former high school foes who become friends after being partnered as police officers. The concept is a spin on the '80s TV series of the same name, and, like in the TV show, Hill's Schmidt and Tatum's Jenko are at first sent to work undercover in a high school.

The resulting comedy, "21 Jump Street," was released in March 2012 to critical praise and box office success, proving that Tatum could do more than just sub as a heartthrob.

"21 Jump Street" was such a hit that it wasn't long before a sequel was announced, and by most accounts, "22 Jump Street" is just as funny as the first. What works so well in the film, which sees the pair's undercover cops head to work on a college campus, is what cements the duo's bond off-screen: a raunchy, daring sense of humor.

For example, the "X-rated" bet that they made before the opening of "21 Jump Street" -- wherein Hill promised to "kiss the tip" of a certain part of Tatum's anatomy through his underwear if they reached $35 million that first weekend -- is exactly the kind of off-the-wall camaraderie that comes across on screen.

"For this kind of movie," Hill observed at the premiere, "the friendship translates into what the movie's about, which is kind of rad."