‘Neighbors 2’ reunites Seth Rogen, Zac Efron and Rose Byrne

SHARE ‘Neighbors 2’ reunites Seth Rogen, Zac Efron and Rose Byrne

Zac Efron (from left), Seth Rogen and Rose Byrne in a scene from “Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising.” | Chuck Zlotnick/Universal Pictures

BURBANK, Calif. — In “Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising,” the sequel to the hit 2014 film, a key theme is the concept of “neighbors from hell.” While the first movie centered on a hard-partying fraternity causing havoc for the couple next door, the sequel focuses on those same parents (again played by Seth Rogen and Rose Byrne) now trying to sell their house — before the new buyers can learn their neighbors will be a wild sorority.

Rogen, who also co-wrote the “Neighbors 2” screenplay, laughed as he talked about his own neighbors from hell — in real life.

“I’ve had a lot over the years. I’m beginning to think it’s me! I’m the only consistent part of the pattern,” said the entertainer, noting there was a “sense of deja vu, sitting here talking to you about this sequel — two years after we promoted [the original] ‘Neighbors.’

“Back then I told you about the horrible neighbors I was dealing with — who were causing such a ruckus with their construction on the house by mine. I still have those same neighbors! And they are still under construction on that house. It’s been under construction for years and years and years. I disliked him and his construction back then [in 2014] and I still dislike him today!”

Sitting next to Rogen, Byrne said real life “has, fortunately, never imitated art, so to speak. … I’ve always had lovely neighbors, or at least no neighbors from hell. My current ones are truly lovely, academic types. … He’s writing a book on fracking. I think that says it all!”

Also returning for the “Neighbors” sequel (opening Friday) is Zac Efron, who laughed when asked if he ever had danced as much as he does in the second film. “Not since I did the ‘High School Musical’ films — but in this case it was wearing a lot less clothes,” noted the hunky actor, who is seen throughout “Neighbors 2” showcasing his ripped physique, wearing short shorts (or even less).

That said, Efron loved the dancing scenes — with one exception. “There’s a scene in the film where Seth squeezes a ham — right off the grill — and squeezes the grease from the ham all over me to lube me up.”

Rogen couldn’t resist interrupting his co-star at that point. “It was the grossest thing. They had injected that ham with like silicone to make it look better on camera.”

Efron agreed, adding, “It was impossible to get off. In the shower, I still couldn’t get it off. Water kept beading up. … It took a lot of scrubbing!”

In the film, Chloe Grace Moretz plays a college freshman who organizes a new, offbeat sorority — one that breaks the rule about sororities throwing parties.

Moretz enthusiastically agreed that if she was in college, she would want to join something like the fictional Kappa Nu in the film. “I would never join a traditional sorority,” said the actress. “That would be too boring!”

While Moretz has appeared in a number of comedies and lighter TV shows and big-screen films, she is likely best known for such sober projects as “If I Stay,” “Clouds of Sils Maria,” the “Carrie” remake and “The Amityville Horror.”

“To be honest, most of the movies I’ve done are very dramatically driven. I have been tempted to go into comedy in the past, but I rarely have found a part that was real enough or cool enough for me to want to attempt it.

“This story just hit me as perfect, plus I felt it would really connect with a younger generation.”

While Moretz, at the age of 19, is clearly a member of that younger generation, she laughingly admitted, “I’m kind of like a funny old grandmother” when it comes to dealing with her own neighbors in Los Angeles.

“I’m the neighbor who is always calling the cops on people! I actually called the cops yesterday. There are these hooligans who are living in the property right next to my house. It’s a house that’s owned by the same people who own my home, but they rented the next-door place to bunch of real loud, crazy people. They’re always loud, drinking and smoking ganja at all hours. It was 8 p.m. and I called the cops to get them to quiet down! Guess I’m really an old lady at heart!”

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