Phil Lord and Chris Miller Deal

In February, Fox presented a preview of this fall’s new addition to Sunday night animation, Bless the Harts. Emily Spivey created the show and produces it with Phil Lord and Chris Miller. Today, Fox presented a double panel with Bless the Harts and Duncanville, from Amy Poehler and Mike and Julie Scully. After the panel, Lord spoke with /Film about his and Miller’s upcoming film, The Last Human.

Based on the Lee Bacon book and adapted by Henry Gayden, Last Human sparked a bidding war ultimately won by Sony/Tristar. Lord gave us a few more details on the film as well as an update on the Jump Street and Lego franchises.

The Last Human Will Still Have the Lord and Miller Touch

Lord and Miller have always managed to bring their sensibilities to pre-existing properties. True, they had a lot more leeway on the Lego movies and the children’s book Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, but 21 Jump Street could have been any kind of remake and it became a distinct Lord and Miller comedy.

The Last Human will be published in October, so we don’t know much about it yet, but Lord confirmed it would not depart too far from the sensibilities we notice across all Lord and Miller productions. So it won’t be a straight sci-fi.

“We don’t do anything straight,” Lord said.

It’s a Cautionary Tale About Our Technology

Most science fiction is a cautionary tale. When it comes to technology, we regularly refer to Skynet from the Terminator films when Autocorrect acts up. Last Human is about, as it says, the last human being meeting a society of robots.

“That’s also a really interesting project because it is about our relationship to technology and manifesting that in some individuals that are learning how to navigate that relationship together,” Lord said.

Last Human has been described as a reverse E.T., since the human is the fish out of water in a society of other creatures. Lord likened it to a different ‘80s movie.

“It’s really like Stand By Me with robots,” Lord said. He acknowledged the E.T. comparison though. “A little bit because it’s about an alien coming into a robot society and that alien is a human being,” Lord said.

What’s Next For Jump Street?

There’ve been many different plans for a Jump Street sequel. There are jokes about 23 Jump Street in 22 Jump Street, and there were ideas to combine the 21 Jump Street and Men in Black franchises. Lord once even teased the idea of skipping 23 and doing 24 Jump Street. Right now everything is on the table.

“There’s tons of good ideas flying around and I know it’s important to Sony, and certainly important to us and Neal Moritz, who’s the big cheese over there,” Lord said.

I’m on board for anything they want to do with Jump Street. Perhaps only people obsessed with sequels could appreciate what a profound commentary on sequelitis 22 Jump Street was, although even casual viewers seemed to enjoy the montage of fake sequels that ended the movie. Any of the above ideas sounds like taking it to the next meta level. 

Since Men In Black International underperformed, could they try that crossover again?

“I don’t know,” Lord said. “That’s an actual I don’t know. That’s not a dodge.”

No News On Lego Sequels

The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part opened earlier this year. As of now there are no future Lego movies on Warner Brothers’ calendar. There was a proposed Billion Brick Race movie in development at one point. 

“TBD,” is all Lord said about future Lego movies. “We don’t know.”

The Lego Movie 2 did perform less than the original or The Lego Batman Movie, although it was an improvement over The Lego Ninjago Movie. It was also the fourth Lego movie in five years. I wouldn’t worry about the franchise losing steam, just perhaps spreading itself too thin. If they give kids a few years off, they’ll be ready to watch another Lego movie again.

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