Writer-director David Wain, who’s most well known for directing Wet Hot American Summer and its two seasons of prequel/sequel stories, is assembling his cast of usual suspects to tell the story of Doug Kenney and the National Lampoon brand. Originally a magazine that debuted in 1970, the company began producing films in 1978 with Animal House, going on to produce a handful of other comedy classics including Caddyshack and the Vacation movies starring Chevy Chase.
Wain’s new film, A Futile & Stupid Gesture, stars Will Forte as Douglas Kenney and Martin Mull as a “present day” Doug. The real-life Kenney died at age 33 after falling off a 35-foot cliff in Hanapepe, Hawaii. Although the death was determined to be accidental, Kenney battled depression and drug addiction for much of his life. His struggles were widely known amongst his close friends, and Caddyshack director Harold Ramis once said that Kenney “probably fell while he was looking for a place to jump.”
According to a synopsis of the new film:
A Futile and Stupid Gesture is the story of comedy wunderkind Doug Kenney, who co-created the National Lampoon, Caddyshack, and Animal House. Kenney was at the center of the 70’s comedy counter-culture which gave birth to Saturday Night Live and a whole generation’s way of looking at the world.
The film co-stars Joel McHale as his Community co-star Chevy Chase, Seth Green as Christopher Guest, Domhnall Gleeson as Henry Beard, Jon Daly as Bill Murray, Lonny Ross as Ivan Reitman, Rick Glassman as Harold Ramis, Jackie Tohn as Gilda Radner, and Paul Scheer as Paul Shaffer. Joe Lo Truglio, Emmy Rossum, Finn Wittrock, Matt Lucas, and Gregg Turkington also co-star. In a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly, David Wain revealed his process for re-telling such an iconic and controversial story:
“The whole task of the movie was terrifying in that way, in that we’re laying down the story of something that is important to a lot of people. But what I realized is that we can only just tell our story. Everyone has a different point of view. Memory is so elastic and people have wildly different recollections of even very objective facts. So we just listened to everybody and then we created a story.”
A Futile & Stupid Gesture comes to Netflix on January 26th, 2018.
Images: Entertainment Weekly, Netflix
Source: Geek Tyrant