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The Making Of Miss March
MISS MARCH marks the feature screenwriting, directing and acting debuts of Zach Cregger and Trevor Moore. The pair, who met in a Brooklyn dorm while studying at New York's School of Visual Arts, are co-founders of the five-person sketch comedy group "The Whitest Kids U' Know.” The group performed regularly on campus, then at a Lower East Side rock club after they graduated. Later, they posted their sketches on the Web. But it wasn't until they got their own show on Fuse TV and, later, the Independent Film Channel (IFC), that Moore and Cregger caught the eye of producer Tom Jacobson.

"I had heard of ‘The Whitest Kids U' Know' and seen some of their stuff online,” recalls Jacobson, former co-president of Paramount Pictures. "I thought they were really funny and was looking to get in business with them. Then I found the script for MISS MARCH. We thought it was a really funny script and a funny idea for a movie, so Tobie Haggerty, the Whitest Kids' manager, my producing partner Monnie Wills and I took it to Zach and Trevor.”

The producers and Fox took a leap of faith in inviting the duo to write, direct and star in MISS MARCH. "Fox came to us with the script and they said they'd be interested in us doing it if we re-wrote it,” recalls Moore. "They liked our TV show and they had this project and they liked the story, and they were like, ‘If you guys can do something cool with this, we'll get behind you.'”

At first, Cregger was somewhat resistant to the idea. The pair was working on another script at the time and he had other ideas about what kind of film their first feature should be. "I had this notion that whatever we did first should be this big, fantastic—more of like a surreal fairy tale as opposed to a teen road-trip sex comedy,” he says. "I didn't want to make another PORKY'S.”

But eventually the two warmed to the idea of bringing a completely new take to MISS MARCH. "We took the basic notion of a guy falling into a coma. That's interesting. He wakes up four years later. That's interesting. His girlfriend is a Playmate. Okay. So then we added these ideas about abstinence and sexual identity, added firemen, added Candace, added Horsedick, added all that stuff.”

The "they” included Steven J. Wolfe, another producer who helped shepherd the project to completion. "I flipped out when I read it,” recalls Wolfe. "I thought it was one of the funniest things I had read in ages and I just really loved it.”

Jacobson says the quality of the screenplay helped the project get a green light in near record time. "Usually things don't go this quickly,” he says. "We sold the script. They took about six months to do their draft. We turned it in to the studio. The studio had a few notes on it. They did a quick rewrite and then the studio said, ‘Let's budget this and let's make it.' I told Zach and Trevor, ‘This is not very common so you guys did something really right.' They wrote a fantastic script and that's what got it made.”

Part of the script's appeal is its fresh take on a common male fantasy. "A trip across the country to crash the Playboy Mansion—this is every young guy's dream basically,” says Wolfe. "There's nobody you talk to who hasn't heard of the Playboy Mansion. It brings up something different for everybody. Even if you haven't been there, you think you've been there. The Playboy Mansion is part of our culture.”

Jacobson agrees: "The story has a sort of road-trip urban legend to it. I think a lot of young men fantasize about the notion of what the Playboy Mansion would really be like. What would happen if I could get into a party there? It's the ultimate fantasy destination for a lot of guys.”

But it is Moore and Cregger's unique brand of humor, honed through their years as sketch comedy writers and performers, that really sets the script apart.



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