If there was a slight disappointment at last December's wholly wonderful Butt-Numb-A-Thon, it's that the appearance of a certain Universal publicist didn't translate into an surprise screening of the Simon Pegg/Nick Frost/Greg Mottola sci-fi road comedy PAUL. One of my friends who's seen the movie assured me it would play brilliantly if programmed in the KICK-ASS slot (i.e. the penultimate film of the twenty-four hour festival). But it was not to be.
Watching the new theatrical trailer that just premiered at Apple's trailer site, I can certainly see the potential. It's got the zany/heartfelt tone of SHAUN OF THE DEAD and HOT FUZZ, which is obviously a good thing. The trailer plays a bit broadly, but that's just to hook the folks who aren't pre-sold on a Pegg & Frost road movie. People I respect really dug the screenplay, and I can't think of a better director to tackle whimsical material like this than Mottola, who's an impressive three-for-three thus far in his career (with THE DAYTRIPPERS, SUPERBAD and ADVENTURELAND). Don't mean to be pushy, but I'd like to see this now, Universal.
PAUL opens theatrically March 18th. Between this and YOUR HIGHNESS, Universal is looking at a terrific spring.