Neighbors

Nicholas Stoller was on a panel for the second season of The Carmichael Show on NBC for the Television Critics Association. After the panel, I spoke with Stoller one-on-one for updates on his many movie projects, including the comedy sequels Zoolander 2 and Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising, and the animated feature StorksRead More »

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Storks teaser trailer

Nicholas Stoller has already made a name for himself as a comedy director with films like Forgetting Sarah Marshall and Neighbors, and now he’s branching out with his first animated feature. Co-directed by Stoller and Pixar vet Doug SweetlandStorks features the voices of Kelsey Grammer and Andy Samberg as storks who, instead of delivering babies, deliver packages for an online retailer.

Also starring are Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele, for those of you who haven’t quite recovered from the end of Key & Peele, though you don’t hear them in the first promo. Watch the first Storks teaser trailer after the jump.  Read More »

nicholas stoller neighbors interview

The upcoming comedy Neighbors is odd in that the director, Nicholas Stoller (above, center), came on pretty late in the process. Writers Andrew J. Cohen and Brendan O’Brien first pitched the idea to producers Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. They loved it and thought of Zac Efron as the lead frat boy in the conceit. Only then did Stoller get the call. Once he came on board, many things were already in place. That’s not to say he didn’t put his own stamp on it, however.

That stamp comes from Hollywood experience that’s been incredibly eclectic so far, and is only getting more weird. Stoller first directed Forgetting Sarah Marshall, wrote and directed Get Him To The Greek, wrote The Muppets, wrote and directed The Five Year Engagement, wrote Muppets Most Wanted and, after Neighbors, he’s going into the world of animation with Captain Underpants and Storks.

In this interview, we talk about all of that. We also discuss the issues marketing a comedy where you want to sell the movie but also not ruin the jokes, PG-13 vs R in the eye of an executive, the latest on some upcoming projects, being part of the Warner Bros. Animation brain trust and how Enter the Void played a part in the production.

We also discussed lots of behind the scenes Neighbors stuff, dissecting some of the film’s best jokes, but we’ll save that for next week so you can see the hilarious movie this weekend and not be spoiled. Read the non-spoiler Nicholas Stoller Neighbors interview below. Read More »

Warner Bros. was once a studio synopymous with animation thanks to the Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies cartoon lines. But it has been a long time since WB was particularly commanding in theatrical animation. (The studio does have a healthy direct to video animation arm, however.) Other studios such as Pixar and DreamWorks have taken center stage there.

Pixar is famous for its “brain trust,” and the concept of having some individual or group of people to guide other projects, beyond the basic producer capacity, has spread to Marvel, which has Joss Whedon, and Fox, which hired Mark Millar to emulate Whedon’s “godfather” duties with superhero projects.

Now Warner Bros. is assembling its own group of creators to act as a sort of brain trust, with the filmmakers behind Crazy, Stupid, Love., Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, and The Muppets formed into a new feature animation think tank that will hopefully create one animated feature per year for the studio.  Read More »