Even though temperatures were in the 40s, the premiere of New Line’s dark comedy “Game Night” at the TCL Chinese carried plenty of warmth Wednesday night.
Jason Bateman, who stars and produces, said he was particularly proud of the strong early reviews — ranked at 82% “fresh” on Rotten Tomatoes — and the ability of co-directors Jonathan Goldstein and John Francis Daley to mix comedy with a crime thriller.
Daley said, “It’s not an easy one because we’re straddling genres.”
Screenwriter Mark Perez credited the Oscar-nominated “Get Out” with serving as an inspiration when the film was being shot last year.
“You’re not sure if ‘Get Out’ is a horror movie, and we kind of leaned into that,” Perez said. “We’re doing a comedy with a murder thrown in. I think audiences are a little tired of regular comedies and want more these days.”
“I love seeing studio ensemble comedies, just to relax and eat some popcorn, but Jonathan and John made the film a lot funnier than it needed to be,” Bateman added. “It’s a huge credit to the directors.”
Billy Magnussen, who portrays a serial dater in the movie, admitted that the experience of a premiere at the Chinese was not lost on him.
“I’m thankful every day,” he reflected. ” My first gig was (at) the Eugene O’Neill Theater in Connecticut, and I got fired from that. Then I was in ‘The Ritz’ on Broadway. Every opportunity I’ve gotten has been awesome.”
The red carpet featured the highly recognizable designs and graphics from Monopoly and Jenga. The after-party took place at the Avenue.
Besides Bateman, producers are John Davis, John Fox and James Garavente. New Line opens “Game Night” on Friday.
Pictured above: “Game Night” directors Jonathan M. Goldstein and John Francis Daley