EXCLUSIVE: In what marks another A-list talent headed to Netflix, sources tell Deadline that Judd Apatow has set his next comedy at the streamer. Apatow will direct and produce the untitled comedy and co-write the script with Pam Brady. Apatow’s longtime partner Barry Mendel will serve as executive producer.
The film follows a group of actors and actresses stuck inside a pandemic bubble at a hotel attempting to complete a film. The pic couldn’t be more timely as more and more productions are ramping back even as COVID-19 is still in full effect around the world. While no talent have attached to star yet, sources say Netflix is fast-tracking the project with plans to meet with actors in the weeks to come as insiders say the amount of juicy parts could lead to an all-star ensemble that could rival Knives Out or The Disaster Artist.
The film is not only a big deal because it marks another top talent headed to Netflix, but it also will mark the first feature film Apatow directs that isn’t at Universal, the studio he’s called home since his break-out blockbuster comedy The 40-Year Old Virgin in 2005. Since then, the two have created a juggernaut of comedy hits that Apatow not only directed like Knocked Up and Trainwreck, but produced as well like Forgetting Sarah Marshall.
Universal and Apatow most recently teamed on the comedy The King of Staten Island, which became one of the first major live-action films to make the decision to move to Premium VOD, which turned into one of the bigger on-demand success stories of 2020. Following the critical acclaim of the movie, Universal and Apatow are now preparing an awards campaign for the film.
Insiders say Apatow’s move to Netflix had more to do with the timeliness of the project and how Netflix is able to finance it now as Universal figures out how it manages its slate in these new challenging times. Apatow and Netflix already had a good relationship on the TV front after working together on the Netflix series Love, which he co-created and exec produced. So when it came to finding where his next film would shoot, Netflix seemed like the obvious choice.
Brady is best known for her longtime work as a writer on South Park.
Apatow and Brady are is repped by UTA, Mosaic and Ziffren Brittenham. Brady is represented by UTA, Mosaic and Sloane, Offer, Weber & Dern.