I’m hoping Judd Apatow can deliver another great comedy with Trainwreck, although it probably won’t be entirely like his old form. He’s collaborating with writer and star Amy Schumer, and I’m fascinated to see how his approach to comedy changes with that approach. He definitely needs a change of pace as his films become longer and more self-indulgent, and hopefully he reached his nadir with This Is 40.
Apatow realizes that he’s mined his personal life for material, and is now turning his attention to a story that’s unlike anything he’s done before. Speaking on the You Made It Weird podcast [via The Playlist], Apatow revealed that he’s working on a story about soldiers coming home after fighting in Iraq:
“[It’s] just about: what happens to soldiers who return to a country that isn’t even that aware that we’re at war? And different issues that they face that people don’t think about too much.”
Apatow is writing the script with author Phil Klay, who wrote the book Redeployment, which is “about soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan, their time there and what happens when they come home.” He goes on to say that the screenplay is “comedy with drama or a drama with comedy about those people and what they’ve gone through and hopefully in an entertaining way so it’s not one of these depressing movies you don’t want to see.”
Although he doesn’t say if he’ll direct, I’m encouraged to see Apatow go in this direction even though he acknowledges that it’s difficult for him to write about material he hasn’t personally experienced. I think it’s time for Apatow to enter a new phase in his career because he’s still immensely talented, but I want him to branch out. Between Trainwreck, which opens July 17th, and this new screenplay, it looks like he’s going in an exciting new direction.