Had Kristin Wiig been so inclined it seems likely that we’d be talking about Bridesmaids 2 right now instead of The Heat. After Bridesmaids proved that women can get diarrhea too and made a stunning $288 million worldwide on a budget of $32.5 million, Universal Pictures wanted a sequel. Just one little, well, big problem: Kristin Wiig told them “you…you…get out of here!” She co-wrote the screenplay and reasoned there was no story left to be told with those characters. Universal tried to do exactly what they had done years earlier when they made Evan Almighty, i.e., make a sequel centered around one of the supporting players. In this case, that was to be Melissa McCarthy, but she made the Spice Girls proud by shouting “Girl Power!” and “Zigazig ah” before clarifying she simply meant she was out if Wiig wasn’t involved.
So, Bridesmaids director Paul Feig re-teamed with McCarthy on a different project, The Heat (which was simply entitled Untitled Female Buddy Cop Movie at the time), at a different studio (20th Century Fox). That studio locked up the director and star as well as fellow star Sandra Bullock for a sequel prior to the film’s release, a wise move in light of the $112 million domestic gross in a mere 3 weeks. Huzzah! Everyone wins…well, not Universal. They got pretty hosed here, but since they were trying to repeat their same Evan Almighty-sized mistake they aren’t exactly going to get a lot of sympathy. What about Kristin Wiig, though?
Well, she actually has a new movie coming out this Friday (7/19). It is an independent film which first premiered last year at the Toronto Film Festival where it was picked up for U.S. distribution by Lionsgate and Roadside Attractions. It co-stars….well, why I don’t just show you the trailer instead of listing it all out:
You’ve got Wiig playing another insecure character who will somehow “find herself,” as well as literally find herself in the bed of Glee‘s Darren Criss (What would Kurt think? Is this the mystery person Blaine was with when he cheated on Kurt? Whoa. I just blew my own mind…and suddenly realize non-Glee fans have no idea what the hell I’m talking about). There’s Annette Bening reminding us “hey, I’m funny, dammit!” and Matt Dillon rolling out his skeevy There’s Something About Mary charm. It might look a bit like your increasingly conventional indie film about an unconventional family, but it definitely doesn’t look bad.
Here is the official plot synopsis for Girl Most Likely from Lionsgate:
Kristen Wiig stars as Imogene, a failed New York playwright awkwardly navigating the transition from Next Big Thing to Last Year’s News. After both her career and relationship hit the skids, she’s forced to make the humiliating move back home to New Jersey with her eccentric mother and younger brother (Annette Bening and Christopher Fitzgerald). Adding further insult to injury, there’s a strange man sleeping in her old bedroom (Darren Criss) and an even stranger man sleeping in her mother’s bed (Matt Dillon). Through it all, Imogene eventually realizes that as part of her rebuilding process she must finally come to love and accept both her family and her Jersey roots if she’s ever going to be stable enough to get the hell away from them.
This kind of seems like the type of thing Wiig wants to do now that she’s left Saturday Night Live for good and walked away from the opportunity to cash-in on the Bridesmaids success by turning it into a franchise at Universal (I shudder to think of the possible Bridesmaids-themed rides they could have added to Universal Studios in Florida). Last year, she starred in an off-beat indie drama (Friends with Kids) and comedy (Revenge for Jolly!). This year she has shown up in the new season of Arrested Development as well as provided the voice to Steve Carell’s animated love interest in Despicable Me 2. When asked in an interview with Collider about her upcoming projects, she had this to say:
Anchorman 2 and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty come out in December, and then I have Girl Most Likely coming out in July. That’s a smaller film. I did two other really small films, Hateship, Loveship and The Skeleton Twins, which hopefully will be going to festivals. I’m really excited about those. They’re more on the dramatic side. I’m trying to do a little bit of both.
Good for you, Kristen Wiig, for continuing to not do exactly what we’d expect you to.
Girl Most Likely opens in the U.S. in limited release this Friday (7/19). At its premiere at last year’s Toronto Film Festival, critics mostly gave it good-but-not-great reviews, although it currently has a terrible 20% rating on Rotten Tomatoes (out of only 5 total reviews though).
- Watch: Kristen Wiig’s New Film, ‘Girl Most Likely’ (abcnews.go.com)
- Kristin Wiig says ‘Bridesmaids’ sequel won’t happen with her (realnewsnow.com)