New Girl’s Max Greenfield has a new project on his slate, teaming him for a second time with writer/director Michael Showalter for Hello My Name Is Doris. According to Greenfield, when he spoke to The Wrap, the film is something of a departure for the Wet Hot American Summer scribe.
“It’s about Doris, this character – she’s an older woman. Her mother passes away and then she’s forced to kind of find a new life in the city, and she meets this younger guy and thinks he’s the answer. It’s very funny, but it really kind of toes the line. It’ll be different than what you’re used to [seeing] with him,” said Greenfield.
Michael Showalter co-wrote They Came Together with David Wain, featuring Max Greenfield alongside stars Amy Poehler and Paul Rudd - which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January this year, and will also screen as part of the Sundance London Film Festival this month.
Making Hello My Name Is Doris particularly interesting is the prospect of seeing Max Greenfield afforded a bigger role than we are used to seeing him in. He has arguably always been the best thing about New Girl, but that role is quite limiting.
The character of Doris has yet to be cast, and that decision will greatly affect the tone of the final film. How old is “older?” There’s a great deal of difference between, for example, a Catherine Keener older woman (giving a 21 year age gap), and a Jane Fonda older woman (giving an age gap of 43 years). Either end of that spectrum opens up very different comedic avenues.
But, casting choices aside, it sounds as though Hello My Name Is Doris might have a subtler, darker edge to its laughs, in the final analysis – with elements of mortality perhaps combined with questions about life choices. It’s almost as if the Wet Hot American Summer guy has reached a somewhat reflective middle age himself. If that’s the case, we can look forward to watching a talented and evolving wordsmith spreading his wings even wider and trying new approaches, which is always exciting to do.