In a competitive situation, Apple has given a straight-to-series order to a comedy series from Phil Lord and Chris Miller, Variety has learned exclusively.Titled "The Afterparty," the series is described as a murder mystery comedy set at a high school reunion afterparty. Each of the eight episodes will feature a retelling of the same night told through a different character’s perspective, each with its own unique visual format and film genre to match the teller’s personality.Miller created the series and will...
The director-writer-animator-producer has racked up huge hits in animation (“The Lego Movie,” “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs”) and live action (the “21 Jump Street” franchise). Along with Phil Lord, his writing and directing partner of 16 years, Miller’s also equally at home on the small screen, and both were Emmy nominated in 2015 for directing comedy series “The Last Man on Earth.”
The team’s first big break was the inventive 2002 animated spoof series “Clone High,” and its first major success was 2009’s surreal comedy “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs,” which grossed an impressive $243 million and spawned a 2013 sequel that did even better ($274 million). In between, Miller and Lord directed the 2012 high school action-comedy smash “21 Jump Street,” which grossed more than $200 million and in turn spawned a 2014 blockbuster sequel that did even better ($331 million).
But it was “The Lego Movie,” a $469 million triumph that cleverly avoided the pitfalls of feeling like a corporate branding exercise that underscored the duo’s deft touch and tonal dexterity. The busy team’s working on an animated Spider-Man movie they’re writing and producing for Marvel, a Flash movie for Warner Bros. and several “Lego Movie” spinoffs and sequels. They also signed another three-year pod deal at Fox TV.