Jonah Hill;Channing Tatum

This is part two of our coverage from the set of 22 Jump Street. Read our full report here and check back soon for an interview with Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill.

November 2013 might not seem like a long time ago, but for directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller the months between then and now are like a lifetime. At the time, they were hard at work shooting 22 Jump Street, the highly anticipated sequel to their surprise 2012 hit. Simultaneously, they were still approving shots for the yet-to-open The Lego Movie. In the interim, The Lego Movie became an international phenomenon, anointing the pair as Hollywood’s current “It” directors. (Now they’re rumored to be up for Ghostbusters 3.)

But six short months ago, Miller and Lord were simply worried about making their second live-action movie ever as funny as possible. Below, read a full interview the pair conducted with me and several other journalists from the set. We talk about the huge expectations of this sequel, the nature of sequels in general, celebrity cameos, the new cast and lots of bromance. Read More »

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22 Jump Street Set

Still unsure what to make of 22 Jump Street? Directors Chris Miller and Phil Lord have you right where they want you.

“Everything we’ve ever done has been riding on low expectations,” Miller said. “Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs? A terrible idea. Doing 21 Jump Street as a movie is a terrible idea. The Lego Movie sounds like a terrible idea. If people think this is a good idea, we’re screwed. Because we all know that sequels are terrible, right?”

“We are here to lower your expectations,” Lord added. “You need to go back and write about how you’re not really sure. It might not be that good.”

It’s November 10, 2013 and Miller and Lord joke are joking about 22 Jump Street in between takes on New Orleans set of the sequel. The anticipation is a stark contrast to 2012, when most people instantly wrote off a remake of a ‘90s TV show starring that guy from Step Up and the loser in Superbad. We now know 21 Jump Street became a monster hit that surprised audiences with its audacity, subversion and comedy. That unexpected but welcome success had fans and the studio clamoring for a sequel. However, no one behind the scenes wanted to make one unless they could surprise audiences again.

Fast forward to day 33 of a 55-day shoot on the set of 22 Jump Street. Sure the film is a sequel to a remake of a ’90s TV show, but after seeing two scenes filmed, each featuring hilarious jokes, an awkward self-awareness and lots of surprises, I have bad news for Mr. Lord: expectations have actually been raised.

Below, read all about our visit to the set of 22 Jump Street and check back later this week for the full interviews with the directors and stars. Read More »

The Lego Movie poster header

The Lego Movie 2 has found its director and it’s one of the major creative forces behind the original. Chris McKay, who headed up the bulk of the animation for directors Chris Miller and Phil Lord, has been tapped to direct The Lego Movie 2, set for release May 2017. Read More »

NEBRASKA

Before they were the acclaimed directors of Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, 21 Jump Street, and The Lego Movie, Phil Lord and Chris Miller were making themselves known on the small screen. They created the well-received Clone High, and worked as writers and producers on CBS’ How I Met Your Mother. Now, in the wake of their biggest theatrical opening weekend ever, they’re preparing to head back to television.

Fox has given a series order to Last Man on Earth, a comedy created by Will Forte. Lord and Miller will direct, as well as executive produce alongside Forte and Seth Cohen (by which we mean the head of Lord Miller Productions, not the fictional character from The O.C.). Hit the jump for more details.

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The Lego Movie

It’s not tough to imagine the pitch meeting where The Lego Movie was conceived. The toys have been a familiar fixture of toy chests since the ’40s, and given that every other remotely recognizable playroom property is getting adapted for the big screen these days, it was only a matter of time before someone grabbed a fistful of plastic bricks. Lucky for us, those people turned out to be Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs and 21 Jump Street directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller.

Read More »

Miller Lord Lego

The Lego Movie is now in theaters and, once you’ve seen it, you’ll probably be buzzing both about how “awesome” it is, and talking about all its surprises.

In part two of our interview with the film’s writers and directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller, we talked about many of those surprises and more. We talked about issues around putting so many different franchises in one single movie. We talked about a few of the more surprising and exciting cameos, and we talked about the film’s ending and how it was developed. Here’s part one, the non-spoiler stuff; click below for part two. Read More »

Miller Lord Pratt

The Lego Movie is the third film Phil Lord and Chris Miller have directed. In each, they’ve blown low expectations out of the water. How could a movie about falling food be funny? Why would anyone remake 21 Jump Street? And how the heck do you make an interesting movie about Lego? The answer: make an adventure that’s exciting and funny, but also deeply rooted in the essence of what we all love about toys themselves.

To create The Lego Movie, Lord and Miller co-wrote a compelling screenplay and also gave the film an incredibly intricate and realistic look. It’s a blend of CG with stop motion using actual Legos; every single structure in the film was literally built piece by piece, be it in the computer or in Denmark at Lego headquarters. That gives the film an incredibly authentic feel.

Speaking to the directors, I interrogated them about that process, asking if there were limitations to the Lego construct and about pressure from toy manufacturers. This is part one of our interview. It’s spoiler-free, so feel free to read ahead. Check back Friday for part two where we talk about some of the film’s biggest, most interesting spoilers. Read More »

‘The Lego Movie’ Behind the Scenes Featurette

lego-behind-the-scenes

Consider this a primer for the interview with The Lego Movie directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller that we’ll run later this afternoon. Their new film takes an unusual approach to building a world out of Lego — or it takes an unusual approach to making the movie. The film is actually built out of Lego, whether via stop-motion animation or using a CG process that actually replicated building the film’s characters and sets out of plastic bricks.

This featurette opens a small window on the creation of the film, discussing how some of the film was put together, a process which is illuminated in more detail in our interview. Read More »

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