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Michael Showalter

Michael Showalter on American con artists: "We really are screwed if there's no such thing as truth"

Michael Showalter is having a career-defining moment. The writer, director, actor and producer has been gaining a steady following in the entertainment industry for nearly 30 years, thanks to the beloved MTV sketch comedy show "The State" and the cult classic "Wet Hot American Summer." But more recently, he's carved a reputation as one of the surest hands with stories that skate the line of drama and comedy — especially if they happen to be true. After directing "The Big Sick," in the past year, he's directed "The Eyes of Tammy Faye," and has been a director on "The Shrink Next Door" and "The Dropout."
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Michael Showalter, Jordana Mollick’s Semi-Formal Productions Ups Emily Crook and Devon Albert-Stone to Co-Heads of Development (EXCLUSIVE)

Click here to read the full article. Michael Showalter and Jordana Mollick’s production company, Semi-Formal Productions, has promoted Emily Crook and Devon Albert-Stone to co-heads of development, Variety has learned exclusively. “Emily and Devon have been with Semi-Formal since the beginning,” Showalter and Mollick said in a joint statement. “They have incredible taste, great relationships and their work ethic puts us to shame on a daily basis. We try to play it cool, but we are in awe of how talented they are. But please don’t tell them we said that.” Both Crook and Albert-Stone work across Semi-Formal’s expansive film and television...
ECONOMY
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How Michael Showalter Became King of the Dramedy

'The Big Sick' director has a new TV series (Hulu’s 'The Dropout') and reservations about revisiting 'Wet Hot American Summer' again: "I’m getting old and misshapen." Michael Showalter, ears cushioned by a pair of giant headphones, has no idea that his security system has chirped several dozen times during the course of a February evening Zoom from his Hollywood home. He is not being robbed, we discover. His wife and twin daughters just keep going outside, tending to the burger dinner that they’ll share before the filmmaker heads back to set.
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'The Dropout': Michael Showalter on the Appeal of Directing Reality-Based Stories and Working With Amanda Seyfried

The Dropout, which premieres on Hulu this week, chronicles the story of controversial public figure and entrepreneur Elizabeth Holmes and the rise and fall of her health-tech company Theranos. The miniseries documents Holmes' background, including her decision to drop out of Stanford's School of Engineering and found Theranos at the age of only 19, with the aim of revolutionizing the blood testing process through a machine that would only require a finger prick's worth of blood in order to analyze for potential diseases or deficiencies. In 2015, she was named the youngest and wealthiest self-made billionaire by Forbes, but questions about the methodology and legitimacy of her company's claims began to emerge, and by the following year, allegations of fraud caused Theranos' stock to tumble, with Holmes and fellow Theranos COO Sunny Balwani ultimately indicted on multiple counts of fraud in 2018. Holmes is scheduled to face sentencing this September.
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UproxxPublisher

‘The Dropout’ Director Michael Showalter On Why We’re ‘All Responsible’ For Elizabeth Holmes

Michael Showalter had a very simple motive for agreeing to direct all eight episodes of Hulu’s latest biopic, The Dropout. “I was curious to see how it all played out,” he tells UPROXX over a Zoom chat that keeps freezing every time we dig too deep into the unbelievable life of Elizabeth Holmes – the 20-something Stanford dropout who would scam millions from venture capitalists and global power players in her bid to become one of Silicon Valley’s youngest tech titans.
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‘The Shrink Next Door’ Director Michael Showalter on What He Was Shocked to Learn About the True Story

With The Shrink Next Door now streaming on AppleTV+, I recently got to speak with director Michael Showalter about making the limited series. If you haven’t seen the trailer or heard the wild true story it’s based on, the eight-episode series explores the bizarre relationship between Martin “Marty” Markowitz (Will Ferrell) and his psychiatrist Dr. Isaac “Ike” Herschkopf (Paul Rudd). Over the course of their series, we see how a seemingly normal doctor-patient dynamic morphs into something far more sinister when Herschkopf inserts himself into every part of Marty’s life. The series also stars Kathryn Hahn as Phyllis, Marty’s younger sister, and Casey Wilson as Bonnie, the wife of Dr. Herschkopf. The series was created by Georgia Pritchett and is also directed by Jesse Peretz.
TV & VIDEOS
The News-Gazette

Michael Showalter

BROADLANDS — Michael D. Showalter, 73, of Broadlands passed away Tuesday (Nov. 16, 2021) at home. Michael was born on May 4, 1948, in Waurika, Okla., to Raymond and Juanita (Smith) Showalter. He married Jeanie Ray on July 23, 1967, in Tuscola. He is survived by his wife of 54...
BROADLANDS, IL

Lionsgate Nabs Ensemble Pic Wayland, Michael Showalter to Direct

According to Deadline, Lionsgate has successfully acquired the spec script to Simon Kinberg and Jessica Chastain’s newest movie collaboration titled Wayland. The deal also includes a production commitment, with The Big Sick filmmaker Michael Showalter attached to direct the project. The studio is currently planning to begin its filming next year.
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Lionsgate Lands Simon Kinberg Spec ‘Wayland’; Kinberg & Jessica Chastain To Produce, ‘Eyes Of Tammy Faye’s Michael Showalter Directing

EXCLUSIVE: Lionsgate bought a whopper of a spec package in Wayland. In competition, Lionsgate took the spec script by Simon Kinberg off the table with a progress to production commitment to make the movie. Jessica Chastain will produce, and her The Eyes of Tammy Faye helmer Michael Showalter will direct. Production is eyed for next year. Wayland is an ensemble drama thriller that has shades of A Simple Plan and Knives Out. Kinberg will produce with Audrey Chon (who runs his Genre Films shingle), and Chastain and Kelly Carmichael (who runs her Freckle Films shingle). Showalter will be executive producer. Chastain...
MOVIES

Interview: Director Michael Showalter on His Background in Comedy, Watching Jessica Chastain Work, and Creating the Colorful World of The Eyes of Tammy Faye

Without making much of a fuss about it, Michael Showalter has transitioned from being one of the most successful comedic talents (as a writer, director and performer during his time with the comedy troupe The State, as well as being a part of Wet Hot American Summer and directing his first movie, The Baxter), to becoming a go-to expert in mainstream dramedies, directing such works as Hello, My Name Is Doris, The Big Sick, and The Lovebirds. His most recent directing effort, The Eyes of Tammy Faye, pushes his expertise in balancing various tones in telling the story of the infamous televangelists Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker (Andrew Garfield and Jessica Chastain, respectively). The film takes its subjects seriously while still acknowledging the comedic potential that the couple’s ridiculously lavish lifestyle offered the production. The clothes, the hair, and the makeup all played a huge part in Tammy Faye’s image and popularity, and they are amply represented in this film about her childhood, early marriage, and religious empire-building and the eventual, inevitable downfall with Jim Bakker.
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MovieMaker

Tammy Faye Director Michael Showalter Sees America’s Televangelist Obsession as a Mixture of These Two Things

The Eyes of Tammy Faye director Michael Showalter believes America’s longstanding fascination with televangelists and charismatic leaders has to do with the nation’s Christian roots mixed with unbridled capitalism. “It’s a very American thing. America is rooted in these early Christian spiritual principles and values, plus this capitalist, rugged, individual...
RELIGION
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'The Eyes of Tammy Faye' Director Michael Showalter on Getting Jessica Chastain’s Prosthetics Just Right

While Jessica Chastain has delivered many great performances over the past decade, her work in The Eyes of Tammy Faye as Tammy Faye Bakker might be her best yet. While watching director Michael Showalter’s film, I was blown away by Chastain’s transformation into Bakker with the way she used everything at her disposal to vanish into the role. Chastain has previously talked about how she spent many years studying Bakker’s mannerisms and vocal inflections, and it shows. At times when she's wearing the clothing and makeup you might forget it’s not Bakker on screen. If you’re a fan of watching great actors deliver incredible performances, look no further than The Eyes of Tammy Faye.
MOVIES
UproxxPublisher

Michael Showalter On Navigating The Rabbit Hole Of Tammy Faye and Jim Bakker While Directing ‘The Eyes Of Tammy Faye’

Trying to do a movie about Tammy Faye and Jim Bakker seems difficult. Are they good people? Well, Tammy Faye (portrayed by Jessica Chastain here) certainly has sympathetic qualities. Jim (Andrew Garfield) would be hard to classify as “good,” but director Michael Showalter also can’t get himself to demonize him. Basically, in Showalter’s eyes, he’s a buffoon. But there’s so much story here – from their immensely popular variety show and their also very popular theme park, to all the scandal that followed – it’s difficult to not go down a rabbit hole. And Showalter admits he went down the rabbit hole. And there was a lot there they (he and producer Chastain) decided, for various reasons, not to use. Which he explains ahead.
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/Film

The Eyes Of Tammy Faye Director Michael Showalter On Making A 'Religious Boogie Nights' [Interview]

"The Eyes of Tammy Faye" arrives in theaters this weekend to tell the story of pioneering televangelists Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker, played by Andrew Garfield and Jessica Chastain. The couple shared a meteoric rise to fame and fortune, but it all came crumbling down when they became embroiled in romantic and financial scandals that broke the purity and sanctity of their religious brand.
RELIGION