Ferrell's fans will see some of that in his new film, "Everything Must Go." But the actor also shows his dramatic side as he takes on the role of a guy whose life is a mess.
First he gets fired, then he finds out his wife has kicked him and his belongings to the curb.
"We almost wanted to feel like there were just cameras observing this guy and going through this existence of living on his front lawn and trying to figure out his life," Ferrell said.
"It is the most challenging role I've ever done and yet I loved the fact that the tone of the movie is so real," he added. "It's the most real character I've ever done. The comedy comes out from not pushing it, trying to go for the joke, just through circumstance."
The circumstance in the movie is he has nowhere to live but his front lawn. He eventually decides to sell off his stuff in an attempt to start over.
"I loved the work experience," Ferrell said. "I loved getting to show off that I can actually do this as an actor. I'd welcome more."
This role came to Ferrell's attention from a first-time writer-director.
"Everything Must Go" is rated "R" and opens in theatres Friday.