Judd Apatow is partnering with HBO to make a two-part documentary on legendary U.S. comedian George Carlin.
Knocked Up creator Judd Apatow and long-time collaborator Michael Bonfiglio will direct the films from HBO Documentary Films and Rise Film; reuniting the key creative team behind HBO’s documentary The Zen Diaries of Garry Shandling, which won an Emmy in 2018 for Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Special.
The films are set to be a unique production which will feature a mix of interviews with Carlin’s family and friends as well as material from his stand-up specials, TV appearances, and personal archives.
Born in New York City in 1937, Carlin became gained fame for his observational comedic style covering language, politics, religion, and the world. Carlin who died in 2008 at age 71 had an illustrious career filming 14 HBO stand-up specials, appearing on The Tonight Show over 130 times, filling up venues, and even writing several books that refined his position as a social critic.
Speaking of the project Apatow said: “It is an honor to be given the opportunity to tell the story of his life and work.” This comes after the award-winning director mentioned Carlin’s work earlier this year, describing it as “very prophetic”, and telling the Boston Globe that “he was looking forward to watching a lot of Carlin interviews and specials.”
Teddy Leifer, the executive producer for Rise Films- who produced Oscar-winning Netflix doping documentary Icarus, as well as Oscar-nominated The Invisible War– added: “Carlin is the comedian’s comedian who mastered his craft and shaped American counterculture such that he paved the way for a generation of comics that followed.”
Carlin’s daughter, Kelly Carlin, shared that she has dreamt of finding the right people to tell her father’s story. She wanted a documentary that honored his work without shying away from his personal struggles and humanity – and with Apatow blooming reputation as a curator of American comedy, it seems like the project has fallen into the right hands.
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