FROM David Wain
'Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp' Remember Wet Hot American Summer? Maybe not. As director David Wain tells us, "This is a movie that most people in America have probably never heard of, but for what it's worth, most people in Hollywood probably have." Critics had no love for the summer camp spoof Wet Hot American Summer when it had its very limited theatrical release 14 years ago. But over time, the movie has become legend in the comedy world, especially as many of its cast members went on to big careers -- think Bradley Cooper, Amy Poehler, Elizabeth Banks and Paul Rudd. Now, David Wain, who directed the film and co-wrote it with his comedy partner Michael Showalter, has pulled off the ultimate coup: he's reunited the entire cast for a Wet Hot American Summer series on Netflix -- and tossed in a bunch of new players including Jon Hamm, Jason Schwartzman and Kristen Wiig. Part of the joke is that almost all the cast members are in their 40's but they're still playing teens in the eight episodes that will start streaming on July 31. As in the original movie, the series is set in 1981. It follows the campers and counselors on the first day of camp, filling in their origin stories. (L-R) Amy Poehler and David Wain on the set of Netflix's Wet Hot American Summer Photo: Saeed Adyani for Netflix Wain was a part of the sketch comedy group The State, which had a show on MTV in the mid-90's. When they started to think about casting their first film, Wain and Showalter recruited several other members of The State, including Michael Ian Black, Ken Marino and Joe Lo Truglio. From there, Wain says they reached out to other people they were friends with as well as the most famous person they knew at the time: Janeane Garofalo. Proving that summer camp friendships are deep and long lasting, everyone was on board to come back for the prequel, which was shot at a ranch in Malibu, but through a little movie magic, made to look exactly like the camp in Pennsylvania where they originally filmed.
Revisiting showrunner Steven Bochco on his memoir Steven Bochco, the writer-producer behind record-breaking Emmy winners Hill Street Blues, LA Law and NYPD Blue, fought battles with everyone from out-of-control actors to network censors in his long career. He isn’t afraid to tell those tales in his memoir, Truth Is a Total Defense. This week we revisit the conversation where he shared some of his favorite stories with us.
Why is Trump so behind on filling staff jobs, establishing concrete policies? Yesterday Donald Trump signed a “decision memo” to revamp the air traffic control system. But there was little legislative detail in the plan. There’s not much to other splashy announcements from the White House, including tax cuts and the arms deal with Saudi Arabia. And hundreds of positions are unfilled in federal agencies.
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