There are few constants in the career of Judd Apatow. That’s just something that comes with the territory when you have a long career in Hollywood. However, if there is one true constant, it’s that Apatow films are going to be made in a partnership with Universal. Well, until now.
According to Deadline, Apatow has signed with Netflix to direct a new ensemble comedy film. In addition to directing, the filmmaker is teaming with Pam Brady to co-write the feature. The untitled film is said to tell the story of a group of actors that are forced to co-exist in a pandemic bubble to finish a film. Obviously, this is a feature that has very real inspiration, as it will likely have to be made in its own pandemic bubble, which is how everything is made in the age of COVID.
No casting has yet to take place, but it is being reported that Apatow is working with Netflix to sign a huge cast that will rival recent casts in features like “Knives Out” and “The Disaster Artist.” And it’s the timeliness of the project that seems to be the driving force for Apatow’s move to Netflix. The report claims that the streaming giant was willing to finance the film and move quickly on the project, which is in contrast to how most major studios are working (such as Universal), where there’s a lot of uncertainty and risk. But with Netflix, it doesn’t matter if theaters are open or closed, films will be released on its platform.
Apatow is probably best known for films such as “The 40-Year-Old Virgin” and “Knocked Up.” Most recently, he directed “The King of Staten Island,” which itself was a victim of the pandemic’s effect on Hollywood. That film was expected to be released in theaters over the summer but with exhibitors shut down due to COVID, ‘Staten Island’ was released straight on PVOD and reportedly did decent business for Universal.
While it’s unclear exactly when production will begin on the untitled film, the report claims that actors will likely sign up in the next several weeks.