There is an awesome-ish titled movie coming out today by the name of Hamlet 2. I'll be heading out tonight to see the new comedy flick co-written by Andrew Fleming (Threesome, Dick) and Pam Brady (South Park: Bigger Longer & Uncut, Team America: World Police) and starring British actor Steve Coogan (Night at the Museum, Tropic Thunder), Catherine Keener (The 40-Year-Old Virgin), David Arquette (the Scream movies), Amy Poehler (Saturday Night Live), and Academy Award nominee Elisabeth Shue as herself.
Not to mention the main reason to see the movie (for all us Guilty Ones): Skylar Astin and Phoebe Strole both of recent Broadway show Spring Awakening! The two Springers star as ass-kissing-theater-teacher-pets Rand and Epiphany who perform in the drama class's adaptations of popular films such as Erin Brockovich.
It's so great to see stage actors given a shot at the silver screen. I feel because the Broadway world is so much smaller than that of Hollywood that I have a sort of ownership over these actors. They are my babies and them getting an opportunity to shine in the movie theater makes me a proud mamma.
The film centers around sometime-actor turned worst drama teacher of all time Dana Marschz (Coogan). According to production notes, "Shortchanged in the talent department, Dana still harbors ambitions and passions. At work, that is; his personal life, with his dissatisfied wife Brie (Keener) and their boarder Gary (Arquette), leaves much to be desired. At Tucson, AZ's West Mesa High School, Dana sees himself as an inspirational teacher. But his adaptations of popular films, as performed by his top students Rand and Epiphany (Skylar Astin and Phoebe Strole, both stars of Broadway's Spring Awakening), are not resonating. When his latest — re-creating Erin Brockovich — is dismissed by the 9th grade drama critic and his department is targeted for closure, Dana must reach deep into himself for creativity."
He conceives a musical sequel to Hamlet "that will disdain both political correctness and dramatic credibility. Rallying and rousing his class, Dana casts a wider net by recruiting transfer students like Ivonne (Melonie Diaz) for key roles. With rehearsals underway, objections from school officials and the community are soon raised, but Dana will not be denied his freedom of artistic expression. Dana gets unexpected support from ACLU attorney Cricket Feldstein (Poehler) and his favorite actress, Elisabeth Shue. Above all else, he fervently believes that his opus must be staged, and nothing can break his optimistic spirit."
With song titles such as "Rock Me Sexy Jesus" and "Raped in the Face," this movie sounds ballerific. I'll post a review after viewing the movie.
And this is hilarious (not to mention very timely): When asked in production notes if the movie will encourage kids to put on a show, director Fleming quipped, "If we can prevent one more production of Godspell, we've done something positive." Thanks, Playbill.com!
Ouch... sorry Gavin Creel.