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Due Date Starring Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifianakis This 1sr Look brought to you by Stevn Samblis www.icPlaces.com
From director Todd Phillips, “Due Date” stars Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifianakis as two unlikely companions thrown together on a road trip that turns out to be as life-changing as it is outrageous.
Downey plays Peter Highman, an expectant first-time father whose wife's due date is only days away. As he hurries to catch a flight home to Los Angeles from Atlanta to be at her side for the birth, his best intentions go completely awry when a chance encounter with aspiring actor and disaster-magnet Ethan Tremblay (Galifianakis) leads to the two of them being tossed off the plane and placed on a no-fly list...while Peter's luggage, wallet and ID take off without him.
With no alternatives in sight, Peter is forced to hitch a ride with Ethan and his canine traveling companion on what turns out to be a cross-country road trip that will destroy several cars, numerous friendships and Peter's last nerve.
The comedy “Due Date” also stars Michelle Monaghan (“Made of Honor”), Juliette Lewis (“The Switch”) and Academy Award® winner Jamie Foxx (“Ray”).
Directed by Todd Phillips (“The Hangover”), the film is produced by Phillips and Dan Goldberg (“The Hangover,” “Old School”), from a screenplay by Alan R. Cohen & Alan Freedland and Adam Sztykiel & Todd Phillips, story by Alan R. Cohen & Alan Freedland. Thomas Tull, Susan Downey and Scott Budnick serve as executive producers.
“Due Date” reunites Phillips with key members of his filmmaking team from “The Hangover,” including director of photography Lawrence Sher, production designer Bill Brzeski, editor Debra Neil-Fisher, composer Christophe Beck and costume designer Louise Mingenbach.
ABOUT THE PRODUCTION
“If you're going to travel with me to Los Angeles I have to give you a couple of guidelines. Number one: don't ask me a single question.” - Peter Highman
“It's a simple idea—two mismatched guys forced to go on a road trip together,” declares “Due Date” director and co-writer Todd Phillips. “Robert Downey Jr. is Peter Highman, an architect on his way back to L.A. from a business trip in Atlanta. He's on a tight schedule because his wife is expecting their first child and the date is all set. Everything is fine until he gets tangled up at the airport with a wannabe actor named Ethan Tremblay, who somehow gets the both of them booted off the plane and grounded for the foreseeable future.”
At that point, “simple” flies right out the window.
Stranded without cash, credit, ID or time, Peter finds himself in the galling position of having to hitch a ride home with a guy he'd rather take a swing at—Ethan. The person he holds responsible for his predicament in the first place is now behind the wheel of a rental car and offering him the passenger seat.
Though clearly not his best option, it's Peter's only option.
At first grateful for the company, Ethan soon learns that his tightly wound traveling companion is not going to be any fun at 20 Questions, nor generally receptive to the concept of going with the flow. Meanwhile, Peter realizes he's just joined forces with a guy who can casually ruin his life in more ways than he could ever imagine.
“If there really was somebody like Ethan around, he'd have been strangled in his sleep long ago,” Downey attests. “He's like a laser beam that focuses on the one thing that will drive you crazy the most, the kind of guy who will eat a whole plate of waffles before mentioning he's allergic to waffles. I'm sure a lot of people know someone like this, someone who is perfectly wired to activate all of their irritation buttons.”
Granted, Peter has a short fuse to begin with. “He's kind of an edgy, controlling, judgmental guy with some anger-management issues. And who better to help him explore those issues than Ethan Tremblay? High-strung as he is normally, Peter is now facing the birth of his first child and is thrown into this nightmare, so it's all amped up,” Downey adds.
Ethan, by comparison, gives new meaning to the term laid-back. Zach Galifianakis, who stars as the human lightning rod for trouble, observes, “Nothing affects him, no insult seems to penetrate. Ethan lives in his own head. He has no talent, and he's on his way to Hollywood to capitalize on that. These two guys meet through a series of unfortunate circumstances that are entirely Ethan's fault, to which he is completely oblivious. And every bad thing that happens from that point on is Ethan's fault. Everything.”
Says Phillips, “People always cite chemistry in these kinds of movies. They say it's the chemistry between the two lead actors that make it work. I believe what makes ‘Due Date' work is anti-chemistry; it's two guys with zero connection and zero rapport, constantly butting heads, that generates both the tension and the comedy.”
Dan Goldberg, who has produced all of Phillips' feature films since their 2000 collaboration on the hit comedy “Road Trip,” says, “The ride develops its own momentum as one thing after another happens to impede their progress.”
At the same time, their cross-country trek takes Peter and Ethan on another, more unpredictable journey than what they face geographically—one that leads them to discover as much about themselves as each other.
Provided that they survive it.
Scott Budnick, an executive producer on the film, says, “There's real emotional substance to the story and real issues, and Robert and Zach do a phenomenal job in delivering both the humor and the emotional stakes. My favorite comedies are always the ones that have heart.”
As infuriating as Ethan can be, whether mismanaging his funds, missing potty breaks or launching their car off an overpass, Phillips concedes he has his good points, citing “honesty, innocence and a humanity that makes you connect with him and root for him despite it all. Ethan is a complex character. He has just lost his father, who was his best friend, and is having a tough time dealing with that. There's an underlying desperation in everything he does and an eagerness to please to the point where just making friends means trying too hard.”
“A lot of what he does is to avoid being lonely,” says Galifianakis.
Peter, on the other hand, may come across like a self-assured, aggressive control freak but, says Phillips' “Due Date” screenwriting partner Adam Sztykiel, “You sense that his behavior comes from an emotional place and from issues he has yet to work out, that are revealed in the story. Not far beneath the alpha male posture is his own vulnerability and how terrified he is to be responsible for a child.”
“As a parent,” Downey offers, “I know the big question is how are you going to manage and protect something that you have no experience with?”
Playing on that theme were screenwriters Alan R. Cohen and Alan Freedland, who also have story credit on “Due Date.” “Peter's comfort zone is when he's in control. And everything that happens in this movie is about losing control; from his inability to get back home to the larger issue of his impending fatherhood—and whether or not he's ready for it,” Cohen says.
“We wanted to put him into a situation where he had to travel across the country with someone who was effectively a child,” adds Freedland.
Not that it would lessen Peter's pain, stress and frustration if he knew it might be pain, stress and frustration with a purpose. Still...
“When I read the script, I was moved,” recalls executive producer Susan Downey. “It's so funny and yet so human. You want a comedy to have that grounding, in the way that you want a drama to have some humor. In ‘Due Date,' though his experience with Ethan, Peter finds his human side and gets ready for the birth of his own child. It's about him becoming a man before becoming a father.”
“Guess who's got the Subaru Impreza? Me! Guess who's got the winning personality? Me! What do you have? You have a nice hairline. Fine. You have a strong jaw. But I gotta tell you, mister, your personality needs some work.” - Ethan Tremblay
Despite the “anti-chemistry” Phillips had in mind for their characters, Galifianakis and Downey generated some genuine positive chemistry from the start.
Downey vividly recalls their first meeting. “I was in Venice, California, and some weird guy walks by and says, ‘Hi, I think I'm doing a movie with you.' And I was thinking, ‘I might have to punch this guy.' Then I realized, ‘Oh my God...that's Zach.'
“Later, he came over for dinner so we could talk about the script,” Downey continues. “I asked if he had any dietary restrictions and he sent me a note detailing everything he'd need, like bottled water flown in from Barstow. It's one of my favorite things. I read it to people at parties.”
“We kind of took care of each other on the set—very different from what was going on in the movie. We'd talk every morning about how to make a scene work. It was great. Funny how hanging out with a legitimate actor raises your game,” Galifianakis returns.
“I always respond to projects based on the casting potential,” says Phillips. “I immediately start seeing a movie from the standpoint of casting it. For ‘Due Date,' I knew that if I could get Robert and Zach we could go full out.”
Phillips marks his second collaboration with Galifianakis on “Due Date,” following the comedian's breakout starring role in last year's international blockbuster hit “The Hangover,” that became the highest-grossing R-rated comedy of all time. He says, “Zach and I click because he knows I really get his humor, which can be pretty outrageous.”
In “Due Date,” however, Galifianakis creates a character that calls for a great deal of subtlety. Notes Budnick, “Every little nuance of personality and each detail—the way he walks, the way he talks, the way he thinks—Zach has figured out how Ethan Tremblay would do these things and it's reflected in every single moment he's on screen.”
At the same time, there is a core of unpredictability to the performance. “Zach brings a sense of spontaneity and danger and I think comedy is best with an undercurrent of danger so that you never know exactly what's going to happen or what someone will say or do. In that sense, he's the perfect comedic actor,” says Phillips.
And “Due Date” gives him a worthy antagonist in Downey.
“Not only is Robert a world-class actor but he's naturally funny. I wouldn't think of casting Robert Downey Jr. as anyone's straight-man,” says Phillips. “In ‘Due Date' there is no straight-man because they're both screwed up in their own ways. And the beauty of Zach and Robert playing off each other is that they're both funny but their humor comes from such different places and their styles are so different that you're not mining the same vein.”
Downey, Galifianakis, Phillips and Sztykiel “took the script apart and put it back together,” says Goldberg. “Every day there were new things that touched me and made me laugh. I believe ‘Due Date' audiences will see aspects of Robert and Zach that they haven't seen before and things that will surprise them. As a filmmaker, I'm always looking for that.”
It's a philosophy and a process that Phillips respects. “So much of comedy happens on the day you shoot,” he says, and offers the example of the airplane luggage bin scene. “It just happened as we were looking at the seating and the overhead bin and realized how that could bring them really close in a small space. Zach said, ‘What if I rub up against him while I'm reaching into the bin?' And I said, ‘What if you pull your shirt up first to wipe your glasses so it's just your bare stomach?' Comedy isn't math; it's jazz.”
Says Robert Downey Jr., “I start every day thinking here's what will happen if you do it by the book and here's what can happen if you bend yourself over backwards and forwards again and try to invite the unimagined into the situation. The set had energy like a living being; it was evolving all the time. And what's great and so funny about Todd is that sometimes, with him, it's so wrong, it's right.”
That point of view resonates with Galifianakis, who admits to being right alongside the director in appreciating “the inappropriate,” adding, “Todd and I have the same sense of humor. We like stuff that has a bit of a taboo element—things that are funny specifically because you're not supposed to laugh at them. As a stand-up comic, I love it when audiences laugh before they realize maybe they shouldn't have, and then start to question themselves.
“That's not to say that you can't be offended by something Todd or I do in a film,” he continues with mock concern. “I'm often offended by the things I do in movies.”
“You'd better check yourself before you wreck yourself.” - Ethan
“What I like about road trip movies is that essentially your characters are working without a net. You just throw them out into the elements and say, ‘Deal with it,'” says Phillips. “You don't have the support system of friends and family. People come in and out of your life for intense but fleeting moments.”
To help facilitate that, ‘Due Date' features a stellar supporting cast of characters who offer Peter and Ethan a range of memorable and often thought-provoking encounters along the way.
The first of these is Heidi, a freelance medical supplier with questionable parenting skills, tracked down by Ethan at her Birmingham home to restock his supply of “glaucoma medication.” It's one of many detours that takes them miles out of their way.
Heidi is played by Juliette Lewis, in her third screen role for Phillips. Lewis was touring in London with her band when the director called. “We worked it out so that between London and Helsinki I made a pit stop in a place I didn't even know existed—Las Vegas, New Mexico—for a couple of days, to play a pot dealer,” she recounts. “When Todd calls it's a game of trust. I don't know the role, I don't know what he wants me to do, but I know it's going to be good and it's going to be funny.”
Oscar® winner Jamie Foxx, who recently starred with Downey in “The Soloist,” comes aboard in the role of Peter's old college buddy, Darryl, now living in Dallas.
“It was a real coup to get Jamie to come in as Peter's friend—and, according to Ethan, possibly the real father of his soon-to-be-born child,” says Robert Downey Jr., alluding to yet another way in which Ethan manages to get under Peter's skin.
Within minutes of entering Darryl's home, Ethan spots a few photos, asks a few questions, adds two and two, and comes up with five. “He learns that Darryl is very close with Peter's wife and jumps to all kinds of conclusions. Then, he plants the seed of doubt in Peter's mind,” says Phillips.
“Darryl comes into the picture to do these guys a favor and it's all great...until it's not. Then things get very weird, very fast,” Foxx says of the ensuing scene that lands Peter and Ethan back on the pavement. “Working with Robert, Zach and Todd, you'd never know what to expect, but you could always count on it being a crazy, creative, collaborative experience.”
The travelers also run afoul of an ill-tempered Western Union clerk, played by Danny McBride; a paragon of Airport Security, played by Grammy Award-winning hip hop producer/musician and actor Rza; and an exceptionally indifferent TSA agent, played by Matt Walsh, the ER doc from “The Hangover.”
Meanwhile, back home anxiously awaiting Peter's return is his wife, Sarah, played by Michele Monaghan, reuniting with Downey for the first time since they teamed in the 2005 comedy thriller “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang.”
“Sarah is just about 8 months and 29 days pregnant with her first baby and obviously very anxious,” Monaghan offers. “Her husband is not only m.i.a but is also traveling cross- country with a wild man whose only concern is if she has any ‘recommendations for someone who could give him a perm'?!? Clearly, the baby's arrival looks more promising than daddy's.”
“Sonny, stop. Sonny...No. Stop. Good boy.” - Ethan
Before circumstances force these two to share a rental car, Ethan already has a traveling companion: a French Bulldog named Sonny, who becomes the pair's third wheel and a point of calm amidst the escalating mayhem.
The role of Sonny, though indisputably male, was played almost entirely by a young female Frenchie trained by Mark Harden, of Boone's Animals for Hollywood.
The introduction of a dog into the script came about as Phillips sought to further ratchet up the tension between his two leads and decided that one of them should be a dog person and the other...not so much. After perusing renowned animal trainer Boone Narr's company website, he spotted what he was looking for in Bodie, an adult male French Bulldog with the big ears and wide-eyed comical expression typical of the breed.
Unfortunately, at 26 pounds, Bodie was too heavy to be constantly toted around on one arm, so, with only weeks before filming started, Harden launched a full-scale and very specific search for a six-to-10-month-old, cream-colored, slightly undersized French Bulldog. He first tried the rescue agencies, then tapped into a nationwide network of breeders before finding someone who had a full-grown female weighing in at 15 pounds.
Though Galifianakis jokes that Sonny was trained to fall asleep at the word ‘action,' Harden takes no credit for the animal's relaxed demeanor, conceding, “She's just a very settled and well-adjusted dog. She doesn't get worked up. I think she just learned early on that most of her scenes were going to take awhile and she might as well catch a nap.”
Galifianakis, who bonded with his canine co-star despite an allergy to dogs, says, “I was kind of envious at her ability to fall asleep at work. And she snores like me.”
But as much as the camera loved Sonny, there was one special trick she just couldn't manage, that required a one-day command performance from Bodie.
Harden carefully describes how the trick serendipitously made its way into the story. “French Bulldogs are unable to groom themselves in certain areas as other dogs do. I don't know if it's a combination of their short neck and wide shoulders, but they can't twist backwards.”
Consequently, some of them use their paws, “a natural behavior that Bodie spontaneously offered in front of Todd at that first meeting, while we were talking,” the trainer recalls. “As soon as he saw it, there was no turning back. He said, ‘Oh my God, can you train him to do that?”
“Am I okay? Do I look okay? I have a broken arm. I have three cracked ribs. I have seven stitches in my armpit. Does that answer your question? - Peter
“I love physical comedy,” says Phillips, who happily extends the parameters of physical comedy in “Due Date” to include a multi-vehicle freeway chase, an end-over-end car flip and a shoot-out with some seriously t'd-off border security agents.
“For me,” Phillips continues, “It's fun to include shocking moments that make you say, ‘Whoa, where did that come from?' We shot the car sequence in Las Cruces, New Mexico. They let us break through the overpass and land on the road below. We closed the highway for several days to prepare and execute it but, frankly, you never know how a stunt is going to land, so we set up four or five cameras and let it happen. The car flipped back up on its wheels, but we were prepared for it to do anything.” Filming “Due Date” was a road trip in itself. Location shooting began in and around Atlanta and moved generally westward with the story, touching upon Dallas and the Texas interior and various locations in New Mexico, including Las Vegas and Santa Fe, which the filmmakers covered from a base of operations in Albuquerque, before touching down in California.
“The way the script breaks down, they have to get across the country. in a couple of days so you really need to take the southern route, which is not as long as the northern, so it makes sense in terms of driving time,” says production designer Bill Brzeski.
A separate helicopter unit covered the Grand Canyon for a key scene with Peter and Ethan perched on its rim, overlooking the Colorado River snaking its way through, far below. Between takes, busloads of visitors from all over the world arrived to tour the area and there was some concern on the part of the crew that they might forget to watch where they were going once they caught sight of Downey and Galifianakis.
The film's opening airport scenes were a combination of several elements. The plane cabin mockup was constructed on Stage 11 at Warner Bros. Studios; the curb where Peter's and Ethan's cars pull up was shot at Ontario Airport in California; and the screening area and other terminal interiors were built inside the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta.
Other practical locations in Georgia included a construction site in Atlanta's Buckhead neighborhood; a Waffle House and portions of Highway 27 in Bremen; various locations along I-75 and I-675, GA-route 20 and the Metropolitan Parkway; the Gwinnett Medical Center in Lawrenceville; the 1010 Condos on Atlanta's historic Peachtree Street; and a recently closed rest stop along I-985.
Darryl's home in Dallas was an amalgam of exteriors captured in Buckland, Georgia, and interiors shot in Encino, California. “You're never really anywhere you're supposed to be,” Brzeski says. “Las Vegas, New Mexico was built around the turn of the century and doesn't look like what you'd expect to see in New Mexico. There's a lot of Victorian architecture that doesn't match the typical Santa Fe look so buildings can substitute for almost any American small town, be it Texas or Ohio. We used it as Alabama for Heidi's house.”
The southwestern city also provided the site for one of the film's larger set pieces; a checkpoint at the U.S./Mexico border that was constructed on a bridge spanning a portion of Route 25 in Las Vegas, under which Brzeski and his team formed an encampment of Federali trailers based on actual Mexican Customs vehicles. Interiors of the office and a trailer, as well as a gimbal rig that figures into the action, were built on stage and another rotating rig, dubbed “car-on-a-spit” by one crew member, was designed for the scene in which Peter and Alan take their rented Subaru for a real spin.
All this action takes its toll on the luggage-deprived Peter, forced to spend the entire journey in one increasingly rumpled, torn, stained and slept-in suit. For costume designer Louise Mingenbach, that meant maintaining 20 versions of the suit in five basic stages of deterioration. “Definitely, the story evolves through Peter's clothes,” she says.
With Ethan's wardrobe she was able to have more fun, brainstorming with Galifianakis, who, she says, “has no vanity. Some actors want to look beautiful all the time but that's not Zach. He will wear whatever works for his character, even if it's acid-washed jeans two sizes too small.”
“I really like to look bad in movies,” Galifianakis agrees. “Originally Ethan was dressed like a hippie but I wanted him to be more arty—or, what he would think is arty. He has a perm, he has his dance shoes and his really bad tight jeans and the scarf as an accessory; he wants to be an actor and this is how he thinks actors dress.”
“Due Date” marks Mingenbach's fifth collaboration with Phillips, who says, “I have a great team. I've worked with essentially the same people throughout my career. We write some crazy thing and then I turn to my guys and say, ‘Can we pull this off?'”
Among those previous colleagues rejoining the director on “Due Date” were cinematographer Lawrence Sher, editor Debra Neil-Fisher and composer Christophe Beck.
Scott Budnick points out, “‘Due Date' marks the 10-year anniversary of ‘Road Trip,' Todd's first movie and my first job out of college. We filmed ‘Road Trip' from September to December 1999, and ‘Due Date' from September to December of 2009.”
For Phillips, it's a genre full of possibilities.
“I've been in some strange situations on the road,” confesses screenwriter Sztykiel, a Los Angelino who identified in some ways with Peter. “Here's a guy who's a little sheltered and doesn't have exposure to the 3,000 miles that exist east of his home, and it was fun to force him out of his bubble. It's uncomfortable, but you come away with a better sense of your place in the world. My advice for travelers? Go to the bathroom. Make sure your traveling partner has gone to the bathroom. Don't spend all your money on illegal substances. Don't say ‘bomb' on an airplane. Don't open your car door in traffic. Pretty simple stuff.” Sure. In hindsight.
“There's something about a road trip that brings out the extremes of human reactions and emotions,” says Phillips. “It's a great opportunity for surprises and for people to learn things about themselves or each other that they'd never see if they weren't being pushed to their limits, or having to make the kinds of quick, instinctive decisions you have to make on the road.”
At the same time, the road itself can be almost incidental. “No matter where we are in ‘Due Date,' no matter what's kind of chaos they're going through,” he concludes, “it all comes down to these two guys working out their issues.”
ABOUT THE CAST
ROBERT DOWNEY JR. (Peter Highman), a two-time Academy Award® nominee, earned his most recent Oscar® nomination, for Best Supporting Actor, for his work in Ben Stiller's comedy hit “Tropic Thunder.” His performance as Kirk Lazarus, a white Australian actor playing a black American character, also brought him Golden Globe, BAFTA Award and Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Award® nominations. Downey was honored with his first Oscar® nomination, in the category of Best Actor, for his portrayal of Charlie Chaplin in Richard Attenborough's acclaimed 1992 biopic “Chaplin,” for which he also won BAFTA Award and London Film Critics Awards and received a Golden Globe Award nomination.
Earlier this year, Downey received another Golden Globe nomination for his performance in the title role of the 2009 hit “Sherlock Holmes,” under the direction of Guy Ritchie. Downey returns to the role of the legendary detective in a new Sherlock Holmes adventure, currently slated for release in December 2011.
In summer 2008, Downey received praise from critics and audiences for his performance in the title role of the blockbuster hit “Iron Man,” under the direction of Jon Favreau. Bringing the Marvel Comics superhero to the big screen, “Iron Man” earned more than $585 million worldwide, making it one of the year's biggest hits. Downey reprised his role in the successful sequel, which was released this past spring. He returns to the role in Josh Whedon's upcoming actioner “The Avengers,” which teams Iron Man with other Marvel Comics superheroes.
Downey's other recent films include “The Soloist,” opposite Jamie Foxx; “Charlie Bartlett”; David Fincher's “Zodiac,” alongside Jake Gyllenhaal and Mark Ruffalo; Richard Linklater's “A Scanner Darkly,” with Keanu Reeves, Winona Ryder and Woody Harrelson; “Fur,” opposite Nicole Kidman in a film inspired by the life of revered photographer Diane Arbus; and “Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang.” He also shared in a SAG Award® nomination as a member of the ensemble cast of George Clooney's true-life drama “Good Night, and Good Luck,” and in a Special Jury Prize won by the ensemble cast of “A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints,” presented at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival.
Downey's long list of film credits also includes “Gothika”; “The Singing Detective”; Curtis Hanson's “Wonder Boys”; “U.S. Marshals”; Mike Figgis' “One Night Stand”; Jodie Foster's “Home for the Holidays”; “Richard III”; Oliver Stone's “Natural Born Killers”; Robert Altman's “The Gingerbread Man” and “Short Cuts,” sharing in a Golden Globe Award for Best Ensemble for the latter; “Heart and Souls,” “Soapdish,” “Air America,” “Chances Are,” “True Believer,” “Less Than Zero,” “Weird Science,” “Firstborn,” and “Pound,” in which he made his debut under the direction of Robert Downey Sr.
On the small screen, Downey made his primetime debut in 2001 when he joined the cast of the series “Ally McBeal.” For his work on the show, he won the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Series, Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for Television and a Screen Actors Guild Award® for Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series. In addition, Downey was nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series.
On November 23, 2004, Robert Downey Jr. released his debut album, “The Futurist,” on the Sony Classics label. The album, containing eight original songs, showcased his singing talents.
Downey and his wife, Susan, just formed Team Downey, a production company based at Warner Bros.
ZACH GALIFIANAKIS (Ethan Tremblay) moved to New York City after failing his last college course by one point at North Carolina State University. He got his start performing his brand of humor in the back of a hamburger joint in Times Square, graduating to doing stand-up at night in clubs and coffee houses in the city. While working as a bus boy, he got his first acting job on the NBC sitcom “Boston Common.”
Galifianakis' breakout role came in Todd Phillips' blockbuster hit “The Hangover,” the highest-grossing R-rated comedy of all time. He will reunite with Phillips and cast-mates Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms and Justin Bartha in “The Hangover 2,” slated for a 2011 release.
He also stars in “It's Kind of a Funny Story,” which premieres at the 2010 Toronto Film Festival and opens this fall. Recently, he also co-starred with Steve Carell and Paul Rudd in Jay Roach's comedy “Dinner for Schmucks.” Galifianakis' additional film credits include the Jerry Bruckheimer-produced hit “G-Force”; the indie feature “Youth in Revolt,” with Michael Cera, Steve Buscemi and Ray Liotta; a cameo in Jason Reitman's Oscar®- nominated film “Up in the Air”; “What Happens in Vegas,” with Cameron Diaz and Ashton Kutcher; and the critically acclaimed true-life drama “Into the Wild,” from director Sean Penn.
On the small screen, Galifianakis just started the second season of the HBO comedy “Bored to Death,” with Jason Schwartzman and Ted Danson. In addition, he hosted the critically acclaimed VH1 talk show “Late World with Zach,” and also wrote and starred in “Dog Bites Man” for Comedy Central.
Zach also has an internet talk show entitled “Between Two Ferns.” He has interviewed such guests as Steve Carell, Natalie Portman, Conan O'Brien and Charlize Theron.
When not filming, Galifianakis lives on his farm in North Carolina.
MICHELLE MONAGHAN (Sarah Highman) most recently starred to great critical acclaim in the independent film “Trucker,” which world premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival. She received the Best Actress Awards from the San Diego Film Critics Society, Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival and Vail Film Festival. Monaghan also served as executive producer on the film.
She will next been seen in Sofia Coppola's “Somewhere,” “Source Code,” opposite Jake Gyllenhaal for director Duncan Jones and “Machine Gun Preacher,” opposite Gerard Butler for director Marc Forster.
Monaghan made her feature film debut in “Perfume,” directed by Michael Rymer, then played Richard Gere's secretary in Adrian Lyne's “Unfaithful.” She followed with supporting roles in Fred Schepisi's “It Runs in the Family,” with Michael Douglas; “Winter Solstice,” with Anthony LaPaglia; Paul Greengrass' “The Bourne Supremacy”; and Doug Liman's “Mr. & Mrs. Smith.”
It was her starring role in “Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang,” opposite Robert Downey Jr. and Val Kilmer, which brought Monaghan to the attention of audiences around the world. She also received rave reviews for her performance in the film, directed by Shane Black. Next, Monaghan joined Charlize Theron and Frances McDormand in “North Country” for director Niki Caro. She then starred in “Gone Baby Gone,” with Casey Affleck and Morgan Freeman; “The Heartbreak Kid,” opposite Ben Stiller; “Mission: Impossible III,” with Tom Cruise and Philip Seymour Hoffman for director J.J. Abrams; opposite Patrick Dempsey in the romantic comedy “Made of Honor”; and in D.J. Caruso's hit thriller “Eagle Eye,” alongside Shia LaBeouf.
JULIETTE LEWIS (Heidi) received Best Supporting Actress Oscar® and Golden Globe nominations for her layered performance as adolescent Danielle, opposite Robert De Niro, in Martin Scorsese's thriller “Cape Fear.”
She reunites with Todd Phillips on “Due Date,” having previously collaborated on “Old School” and “Starsky & Hutch.”
Lewis was most recently seen alongside Hilary Swank, Melissa Leo, Minnie Driver and Sam Rockwell in the independent drama “Conviction,” which premiered at the Toronto Film Festival and opened in October. Prior to that, Lewis appeared in the romantic comedy “The Switch,” alongside Jennifer Aniston, Jason Bateman and Patrick Wilson. She also starred alongside Orlando Bloom, Mark Ruffalo and Laura Linney in Ruffalo's directorial debut, “Sympathy for Delicious,” which took home the US Dramatic Special Jury Prize at this year's Sundance Film Festival. Last year, she played roller derby girl Dinah Might opposite Ellen Page, Marcia Gay Harden, Kristen Wiig, Jimmy Fallon and Eve in Drew Barrymore's directorial debut, “Whip It.”
Among Lewis' many other films are Gary Marshall's “The Other Sister”; “Evening Star,” with Shirley MacLaine; Quentin Tarantino's vampire tale “From Dusk Till Dawn,” opposite George Clooney; the sci-fi actioner “Strange Days,” alongside Ralph Fiennes and Angela Bassett; Nora Ephron's comedy “Mixed Nuts,” opposite Steve Martin and Adam Sandler; Oliver Stone's controversial “Natural Born Killers”; “What's Eating Gilbert Grape,” with Johnny Depp and Leonardo DiCaprio”; “Romeo Is Bleeding”; “Kalifornia”; Woody Allen's “Husbands and Wives”; “Crooked Hearts” and “National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation,” with Chevy Chase.
At 12, Lewis landed her first leading role in the Showtime miniseries “Home Fires.” At 16, her performance in the critically acclaimed longform “Too Young to Die?” led to film roles. Lewis' other television credits include Showtime's “My Louisiana Sky,” for which she received an Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Performer in a Children's Special, and Mira Nair's HBO film “Hysterical Blindness,” alongside Uma Thurman and Gena Rowlands. She also had recurring roles in several series.
In addition to film and television, Lewis's music career continues to evolve. Her third studio album, Terra Incognito, was released in fall 2009.
JAMIE FOXX (Darryl) won an Academy Award® for Best Actor in 2005 for his portrayal of the legendary Ray Charles in the Taylor Hackford-directed biopic “Ray.” Foxx also won a Golden Globe Award, a Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Award®, a BAFTA Award, and an NAACP Image Award, as well as numerous critics' association awards, and shared in a SAG Award® nomination received by the film's ensemble cast.
Also in 2005, Foxx garnered Oscar®, Golden Globe Award, SAG Award®, BAFTA Award, and Image Award nominations, in the Best Supporting Actor category, for his work in Michael Mann's dramatic thriller “Collateral,” in which he starred with Tom Cruise. That same year, Foxx also earned Golden Globe Award and SAG Award® nominations and won an Image Award for Best Actor in a Television Movie for his portrayal of condemned gang member-turned-Nobel Peace Prize nominee Stan “Tookie” Williams in the FX Network movie “Redemption.”
Foxx has a number of films upcoming, including the Seth Gordon-directed comedy “Horrible Bosses”; F. Gary Gray's action thriller “Kane & Lynch,” opposite Bruce Willis; and the comedy “Skank Robbers,” which he also wrote and is producing. His recent film credits also include Garry Marshall's hit ensemble romantic comedy “Valentine's Day,” the thriller “Law Abiding Citizen,” Joe Wright's drama “The Soloist,” the thriller “The Kingdom” and Bill Condon's screen adaptation of the Broadway musical “Dreamgirls.” Foxx also executive produced the film “Life Support,” starring Queen Latifah, which closed the 2007 Sundance Film Festival.
Foxx's big-screen break came in 1999 when Oliver Stone cast him as a star quarterback in “Any Given Sunday.” In 2001, he co-starred with Will Smith in Michael Mann's acclaimed biopic “Ali.” His additional film credits include Michael Mann's “Miami Vice,” with Colin Farrell; Sam Mendes' Gulf War drama “Jarhead,” with Jake Gyllenhaal; “Stealth”; Antoine Fuqua's “Bait”; “Booty Call”; “The Truth about Cats & Dogs”; and “The Great White Hype.”
Foxx first came to fame as a comedian. After spending time on the comedy circuit, he joined Keenan Ivory Wayans, Jim Carrey, Damon Wayans and Tommy Davidson in the landmark Fox sketch comedy series “In Living Color.” In 1996, he launched his own series, “The Jamie Foxx Show,” which was one of the top-rated shows on The WB Network during its five-year run. Foxx also served as co-creator and executive producer, and directed several episodes. His first HBO Comedy Special, “Jamie Foxx: I Might Need Security,” premiered in February 2002.
In addition to his acting success, Foxx has also achieved a thriving music career. His first album, Unpredictable, topped the charts in late 2005 and early 2006 and spawned the NBC special “Unpredictable,” in which he performed with such artists as Mary J. Blige, Common, Snoop Dogg, The Game and Angie Stone. He has been nominated for eight Billboard Music Awards, three Grammy Awards, a Soul Train Music Award, and two American Music Awards, winning for Favorite Male Artist. Foxx's latest album, 2008's Intuition, debuted at number three on the Billboard 200 chart and spawned the chart-topping single “Blame It.” Foxx recently wrapped up his “Blame It Tour” in support of the album. On January 31, 2010 Jamie Foxx and T-Pain's “Blame It” won in the category of Best R%B performance by a duo/group with vocals at the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards.
ABOUT THE FILMMAKERS
TODD PHILLIPS (Director/Screenwriter/Producer) most recently directed and produced the 2009 blockbuster hit comedy “The Hangover,” starring Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, Zach Galifianakis and Justin Bartha. The film became the highest grossing R-rated comedy of all time and won a Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture – Comedy or Musical. He is currently in production on the much-anticipated sequel, “The Hangover 2,” which reunites the cast.
Phillips started his career as a documentary filmmaker, inspired by humor taken from everyday reality and the belief that the truth is often stranger than fiction.
His first film, “Hated,” portrayed the revolting antics of extreme punk rocker G.G. Allin and became an instant underground sensation. It was released in the summer of 1994 and went on to become the highest grossing student film of its time.
He followed that in 1998 with “Frat House,” a documentary that he produced and directed for HBO's popular “America Undercover” series. “Frat House” premiered at the 1998 Sundance Film Festival and won the Grand Jury Prize for documentary features. The unflinching exposé of life in fraternities created a public controversy that eventually caused the film to be shelved by HBO. Phillips still hopes to release it in the future.
After meeting producer Ivan Reitman at Sundance, Phillips made his crossover to features with 2000's “Road Trip,” which established him as a new force in comedy. He simultaneously produced and directed “Bittersweet Motel,” a documentary on musical cult phenomenon Phish.
In one way or another, Phillips' films explore the nature of male relationships, and in doing so he has worked with some of Hollywood's biggest comedic actors, writing and directing such films as “Old School” in 2003, “Starsky & Hutch” in 2004, and “School for Scoundrels” in 2006. Phillips was nominated for a 2006 Academy Award® for Best Adapted Screenplay for his work on “Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan.”
DAN GOLDBERG (Producer) marks his fifth film collaboration with Todd Phillips on “Due Date.” Previously, he served as producer on Phillips' “Old School,” “Road Trip,” “School for Scoundrels” and most recently, “The Hangover,” which won a Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy and is the highest grossing R-rated comedy of all time. Goldberg will next produce “The Hangover 2” with Phillips, releasing in 2011.
Goldberg also produced the outrageous comedy “Howard Stern's Private Parts” and the animated comedy adventure “Space Jam,” starring Michael Jordan, and was an executive producer on Ivan Reitman's romantic adventure “Six Days Seven Nights,” starring Harrison Ford.
His screenwriting credits include the classic comedies “Stripes” and “Meatballs,” both of which he also produced; “Feds,” which he also directed; and the enduring cult favorite “Heavy Metal.”
ALAN R. COHEN & ALAN FREEDLAND (Screenwriters, Story) are best known as Emmy Award-winning writers from the Fox animated show “King of the Hill” and often referred to as “the Alans.”
Among numerous other writing and producing credits, the duo also co-created the Comedy Central cult hit “Kid Notorious,” starring Robert Evans. They are currently co- executive producers on Seth MacFarlane's “American Dad.”
Prior to “Due Date,” the Alans wrote feature scripts for various studios. They currently have several television and film projects in development, including the feature comedy “The Reunion,” for producer Brian Grazer.
A George Washington University graduate, Cohen originally hails from Pittsburgh and worked for several years as a reporter in The Baltimore Sun's Washington, D.C. bureau.
Freedland graduated from the University of Michigan. He grew up in the Detroit area and worked in advertising in Chicago.
ADAM SZTYKIEL (Screenwriter)'s most recent writing credit was the comedy “Made of Honor,” starring Patrick Dempsey and Michelle Monaghan.
He is currently working on a film adaptation of the best-selling memoir “The Game” by Neil Strauss, and has numerous other film and television projects in development.
Sztykiel is a graduate of the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts.
THOMAS TULL (Executive Producer), Chairman and CEO of Legendary Pictures, has achieved great success in the co-production and co-financing of event movies. Since its inception in 2004, Legendary Pictures has teamed with Warner Bros. Pictures on such hits as Bryan Singer's “Superman Returns”; Zack Snyder's “300” and “Watchmen”; and Christopher Nolan's “Batman Begins” and award-winning phenomenon “The Dark Knight,” which earned in excess of $1 billion worldwide.
More recently, this highly successful partnership produced Ben Affleck's “The Town”; Christopher Nolan's summer blockbuster “Inception”; the worldwide hit “Clash of the Titans”; Todd Phillips' “The Hangover,” which is the highest-grossing R-rated comedy of all time; and Spike Jonze's “Where the Wild Things Are.” Legendary's upcoming releases include Bryan Singer's “Jack the Giant Killer,” Todd Phillips' “The Hangover 2,” and Zack Snyder's “Sucker Punch.” Legendary is also developing a number of promising film projects in-house, including “Warcraft,” “Godzilla,” “Gravel,” “Paradise Lost,” and a sequel to “300.”
Before forming Legendary, Tull was President of The Convex Group, a media and entertainment holding company headquartered in Atlanta, on whose Board of Directors he also served.
SUSAN DOWNEY (Executive Producer) is a principal partner of Team Downey, the production company she formed with her husband, Robert Downey Jr. A prolific film producer, she has collaborated with some of the industry's most noted talents on films ranging from action blockbusters to dramas to comedies to horror thrillers.
Downey also produced the global hit “Sherlock Holmes,” which opened on Christmas Day 2009 and grossed more than $516 million worldwide. Directed by Guy Ritchie, the film starred Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Rachel McAdams and Mark Strong in an action adventure mystery that brought Arthur Conan Doyle's legendary detective to the big screen as never before. She is currently producing the sequel, which again stars Downey Jr. and Law under the direction of Ritchie.
Downey also recently served as an executive producer on the action hit “Iron Man 2,” which earned more than $620 million at the worldwide box office. The follow up to “Iron
Man” reunited director Jon Favreau with returning stars Robert Downey Jr. and Gwyneth Paltrow, and also starred Don Cheadle, Mickey Rourke and Scarlett Johansson.
Previously, Downey held the dual posts of Co-President of Dark Castle Entertainment and Executive Vice President of Production at Silver Pictures. Joining Silver Pictures in 1999, she oversaw the development and production of feature films released under both banners, including “Thir13en Ghosts” and “Swordfish.”
In 2002, she made her producing debut as a co-producer on “Ghost Ship” and then co- produced the 2003 release “Cradle 2 the Grave.” Downey went on to produce the features “Gothika” and “House of Wax,” and also served as an executive producer on the critically acclaimed comedic thriller “Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang.”
Downey later produced Neil Jordan's acclaimed psychological drama “The Brave One,” starring Jodie Foster and Terrence Howard; Guy Ritchie's widely praised crime comedy “RocknRolla,” starring Gerard Butler, Tom Wilkinson, Thandie Newton, Idris Elba, Chris Bridges and Jeremy Piven; the horror thriller “Orphan,” starring Vera Farmiga and Peter Sarsgaard; and the thriller “Whiteout,” starring Kate Beckinsale. She was also an executive producer on the Hughes brothers' post-apocalyptic drama “The Book of Eli,” starring Denzel Washington and Gary Oldman.
Prior to her tenure at Dark Castle and Silver Pictures, Downey worked on the hit films “Mortal Kombat” and “Mortal Kombat: Annihilation.”
Downey is a graduate of the University of Southern California's School of Cinema- Television.
SCOTT BUDNICK (Executive Producer) is Executive Vice President of Production for Green Hat Films, overseeing the development and production of a varied slate of projects including the upcoming “Project X,” set for release in 2011. He most recently executive produced the blockbuster hit “The Hangover,” which won a Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy and is the highest grossing R-rated comedy of all time.
Budnick began his entertainment career in local casting while at Emory University in his hometown of Atlanta, Georgia. Upon graduation, he relocated to Los Angeles, serving as casting assistant on Todd Phillips' “Road Trip” and then as associate to the director on “Old School,” starring Vince Vaughn, Luke Wilson, Will Ferrell and Jeremy Piven. Budnick served associate producer on Phillips' following films, “Starsky & Hutch,” starring Owen Wilson and Ben Stiller and “All The King's Men,” starring Sean Penn and Jude Law, which Phillips executive produced; and was co-producer on “School for Scoundrels,” starring Billy Bob Thornton.
LAWRENCE SHER (Director of Photography) reunites with Todd Phillips on “Due Date,” having previously collaborated on the Golden Globe-winning blockbuster comedy “The Hangover.” His work will next be seen in Greg Mottola's sci-fi comedy “Paul,” with Jason Bateman and Seth Rogan, and David Frankel's comedy “The Big Year,” based on Mark Obmascik's book and starring Owen Wilson, both releasing in 2011.
Sher's other recent credits include “I Love You, Man,” “Trucker,” “The Promotion,” “Dan in Real Life,” “The Dukes of Hazzard” and “The Chumscrubber.”
He worked as director of photography on several smaller films and music videos earlier in his career, coming to the fore in 2001 with the award-winning independent film “Kissing Jessica Stein,” followed by director Zach Braff's “Garden State.”
Born and raised in New York City, Sher studied economics at Wesleyan University where, in his junior year, he turned an interest in still photography into a fascination with motion pictures. Upon graduation, he moved to Los Angeles and began his career as a camera assistant.
BILL BRZESKI (Production Designer) previously collaborated with Todd Phillips on the 2009 Golden Globe Award-winning blockbuster comedy “The Hangover,” for which he received an Art Director's Guild Award nomination for Excellence in Production Design. Brzeski re-teams again with Phillips for “The Hangover 2,” releasing in 2011.
Brzeski's other recent credits include “Flipped,” which reunited him with Rob Reiner, having previously served as production designer on Reiner's “The Bucket List”; and re- teaming with Rob Minkoff' on “The Forbidden Kingdom,” having previously worked on the director's groundbreaking CGI movie “Stuart Little” and its sequel, “Stuart Little 2.” Some of the designer's additional credits include “Deck the Halls,” “Blue Streak,” James L. Brooks' Oscar®-winning “As Good As It Gets” and “Matilda.”
Brzeski received his undergraduate degree from Miami University and his MFA in Design from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. Originally interested in designing for the ballet and opera, he began his career in the theatre before moving to Los Angeles from New York City and designing more than 800 episodes of television series.
Brzeski also designs commercial spaces, most notably the award-winning Susina Bakery in Los Angeles.
His production design workshops at graduate and undergraduate levels have been hosted by New York University School of the Arts, Miami University, Clemson University and Loyola University Film School.
DEBRA NEIL-FISHER (Editor) re-teams with Todd Phillips on “Due Date,” having served as editor on his blockbuster hit “The Hangover,” the number one R-rated comedy of all time. The film won a Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy and Fisher was honored with an Eddie Award by the American Cinema Editors for Best Edited Feature Film.
Among Neil-Fisher's other feature credits are the hit comedies “Baby Mama,” “Semi- Pro,” “Role Models,” “You, Me and Dupree,” “Without a Paddle,” “Saving Silverman,” and two hugely successful Austin Powers films, “Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery” and “Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me.” She has collaborated three times with director Donald Petrie on “Just My Luck,” “Welcome to Mooseport” and “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days.” Her work also extends to other genres, including the dramas “Fried Green Tomatoes,” “The War” and “Up Close and Personal,” as well as the thrillers “Teaching Mrs. Tingle” and “Dr. Giggles.”
In 1991 Neil-Fisher won a CableACE Award for her work on TNT's telefilm “Heat Wave,” for director Kevin Hooks. Among her earlier television credits are “The Amy Fisher Story,” “The Case of the Hillside Strangler” and the TNT thriller “Breaking Point.”
LOUISE MINGENBACH (Costume Designer) marks her fifth project with director Todd Phillips on “Due Date,” a collaboration that began on the feature film “Starsky & Hutch,” followed by “School for Scoundrels” and the 2008 telefilm “The More Things Change...” In 2009, her designs were seen in Phillips' mega-blockbuster “The Hangover,” which won a Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy and is the highest R-rated comedy of all time.
The upcoming actioner “Battleship,” based on the classic board game, reunites Mingenbach with Peter Berg, with whom she worked on “Hancock,” starring Will Smith.
Mingenbach also designed costumes for the 2009 action epic ““X-Men: Wolverine.” Previously, she earned a Saturn Award and a Costume Designers Guild Award nomination for her work on Bryan Singer's “X-Men.” She has teamed with Singer on four other films, including the 1995 thriller “The Usual Suspects,” “X2,” “Apt Pupil” and “Superman Returns,” as well as the pilot for “House M.D.”
Mingenbach's additional feature credits include the Farrelly Brothers' “The Heartbreak Kid,” “Spanglish,” “The Rundown,” “K-PAX,” “Gossip,” “Permanent Midnight,” “Nightwatch,” “The Spitfire Grill” and “One Night Stand.”
CHRISTOPHE BECK (Composer) previously collaborated with Todd Phillips on “The Hangover,” which won a Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture – Comedy or Musical.
He has composed scores for 50 feature films and nearly 20 television shows. With more than 15 years of experience, Beck has scored a wide array of projects, including such action films as “Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief,” “The Sentinel” and “Elektra”; the comedies “Date Night,” “Charlie Bartlett,” “The Pink Panther” and “Bring It On”; and such dramas as “We Are Marshall,” “Under the Tuscan Sun” and “Year of the Dog”; as well as the Davis Guggenheim documentary, “Waiting For Superman.”
Beck most recently composed music for the comedies “Death at a Funeral,” starring Chris Rock, Martin Lawrence and Tracy Morgan; “Date Night,” with Steve Carell and Tina Fey; “Hot Tub Time Machine,” starring John Cusack; and Chris Columbus' fantasy adventure “Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief.”
His additional credits include “All About Steve,” “The Greatest,” “What Happens in Vegas,” “Phoebe in Wonderland,” “The Seeker: The Dark is Rising,” “Saved!,” “American Wedding” and “Just Married.”
Beck began his scoring career on the Canadian television series “White Fang,” and from there went on to score three seasons of the hit television series “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” for which he won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Music Composition.