The Simpsons Breaking Bad couch gag

Netflix’s awesomely playful campaign for Season 4 of Arrested Development continues with a banana-flavored Easter egg. Also after the jump:

  • The CW moves Cult from Fridays to never
  • Starz sets a premiere date for Magic City
  • Being Human gets renewed by Syfy
  • Jamie Foxx will direct horror for Syfy
  • … and see what else the network has planned
  • Adrien Brody is History’s Harry Houdini
  • Ryan Murphy‘s new drama heads to HBO
  • Jason Bateman says “Manage your expectations”
  • See The Simpsons‘ homage to Breaking Bad
  • … and Family Guy‘s nod to King of the Hill

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For part one of /Film’s exclusive interview with writer/director Mike Judge for his new film Extract, click here.

In the second part of my interview with Mike Judge, he shares a couple of candid, behind-the-scenes tales about dealing directly with the global corporations that he skewers in his live-action films. No other work captures both this modern satire and the writer/filmmaker’s view of where our world is headed better than 2006′s Idiocracy. The $30 million sci-fi satire was infamously dumped into a handful of theaters to die by 20th Century Fox; a surprising outcome since Judge’s King of the Hill—the Emmy-winning and second longest running animated program in television history—airs on the Fox Network. In fact, King of the Hill‘s grand finale airs this Sunday, and continues its run in syndication and as a contextually welcome addition to [adult swim].

We also discussed how actor Ben Affleck came aboard his latest film—a midlife crisis dramedy entitled Extract—as a shaggy, drug peddlng bartender named Dean. With a cast that includes Jason Bateman in the lead, SNL‘s Kristen Wiig, David Koechner, Mila Kunis, and Juno‘s great J.K. Simmons, it will come as a surprise to anyone sans Satan and Shannon Tweed that KISS‘s Gene Simmons steals the picture as a sociopathic ambulance-chasing attorney. Judge included. And, of course, no interview is complete without peering in on the irreversibly clueless futures of his most famous cretin-creations and voices, Beavis and Butt-Head. Judge shares a few premises for a possible and much anticipated sequel to 1996′s Beavis and Butt-Head Do America. One idea would see the two dumbasses thrown enormous -head first into our post 9/11 world gone mad.
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Renowned American writer/animator/director Mike Judge and hype often seem like complete strangers. As noted in the press, Judge’s friendly, calm demeanor is devoid of Hollywood pretension; his preference for living and working in Austin, Texas posits him by choice away from the center of the pop-cult radar. But when one surveys his vast body of work that, since the early ’90s, has had the functionality of an assembly line yet is packed the witty punch and subversive observation of the greatest comedy, it can easily bowl over.

Speaking with him, the inherent voices of his animated characters—notably the polar opposites that are Beavis and Butt-Head and Hank Hill—hint at the mental arsenal that has perfectly illustrated the damaged, stubbornly resilient fault lines of a national landscape. Personal aside: Judge’s impact on many young people can be demonstrated by the following; on summer vacations, I’d swim in MTV marathons of Beavis and Butt-Head, then go to the beach with a tie-in towel sprinkled with “Uh-huh-huh”s and “Heh heh heh”s. Upon returning to middle school, I’d face a bully who, by eighth grade, had deliberately morphed into an uncanny, doomed facsimile of Butt-Head. It was a ubiquitous combination of “This rules!” and “This sucks!” set to the sights and sounds of the very music Judge championed and skewered on the show beyond compare.

Judge’s contributions to live-action comedy are equally successful, and sometimes financially so. Released to little fanfare in 1999, Office Space eventually became both the perennial example of the DVD cult phenom and synonymous with modern cubicle hell. His high concept follow-up, Idiocracy, experienced a famously aborted theatrical release; in less than three years, Idiocracy is now celebrated and oft-quoted by many peoples as nothing less than faux-low brow prophecy and a sci-fi omelet of chuckling eugenic fatalism.

With his latest, Extract, Judge has written and directed a rare and original comedic defense of the modern-day boss that exudes newer shades of adult drama. As nicely played by Jason Bateman, Judge’s boss is overloaded with sexual frustration, a petty lawsuit, lazy employees, and an accidentally massive intake of weed. The smart, unobtrusive film, one of the funnier of 2009, enters a marketplace overrun by superheroes and spectacle to deliver laughs that are charmingly huge yet reserved, absurd yet realistic. Some might feel that its subject matter is too common-man, too anti-escape. But Judge creates works that are built to last and unconcerned with being hip. In addition, he continues to propel the dumbass dick joke towards Art Americana. Mike Judge discussed where his nascent interest in nuts humor originates, his layman’s knowledge of bongs, and many other things with /Film.

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/FilmCast

In this special episode of the /Filmcast, Dan Trachtenberg from The Totally Rad Show joins David Chen to geek out about their favorite soundtracks. To listen to all of the songs that Dan mentioned during this episode in their entirety, click here to go to Grooveshark. To listen to all of the songs that Dave Chen mentioned during this episode, click here.

Like what you hear? Want to hear similar episodes in the future? Send feedback to slashfilmcast(AT)gmail(DOT)com or call and leave a voicemail at 781-583-1993. One correction to note: the last track that is played, “Fantasia on a Theme By Thomas Tallis” was composed by Ralph Vaughn Williams. Eugene Ormany, who we mention, conducts the orchestral performance.

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Update: Some people have reported experiencing audio problems with this sound file. Please try downloading the file to your computer, rather than playing it in your browser. That should fix the problem (If it does not, shoot me an e-mail or leave a comment below). Thanks!
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