And when Joss Whedon tells you to something YOU DO IT, YOU GODDAMN NERD.
No but really, standup comedian Mike Birbiglia has just made his first feature film! It’s called Sleepwalk With Me, and it’s a heartfelt, somewhat autobiographical little indie flick. Cue Joss Whedon. Dude is pissed*. Why, you ask? Because Sleepwalk With Me is taking all the screens away from Joss Whedon’s The Avengers! Here’s what Whedon has to say:
Naturally, Birbiglia and Sleepwalk With Me‘s producer Ira Glass from that one NPR show (you know the one, don’t act like you don’t) have heard Whedon’s declaration of war, and quickly responded:
This is gonna get dirty as hell, y’all*.
Know what you’re boycotting (or seeing 20x in a row, depending on which side you’re on):
“I’m going to tell you a story and it’s true… I always have to tell people that,” so asserts comedian-turned-playwright-turned-filmmaker Mike Birbiglia directly to the viewer at the outset of his autobiographically inspired, fictional feature debut. Birbiglia wears his incisive wit on his sleeve while portraying a cinematic surrogate. We are thrust into the tale of a burgeoning stand-up comedian struggling with the stress of a stalled career, a stale relationship threatening to race out of his control, and the wild spurts of severe sleepwalking he is desperate to ignore.
Based on the successful one-man show, SLEEPWALK WITH ME engages in the kind of passionate and personal storytelling that transfigures intimate anguish into comic art. Produced and co-written by Ira Glass (NPR’s “This American Life”), SLEEPWALK WITH ME features a stellar supporting cast that includes Lauren Ambrose (“Six Feet Under”), Carol Kane (Taxi), James Rebhorn (Meet the Parents), Cristin Milioti (“30 Rock”), and a sampling from the who’s who of today’s stand-up scene.
Bursting with sincerity, Mike Birbiglia’s foray into the medium marks the invigorating emergence of a strong and poignant American voice, at once hilarious and heartbreaking.
Sleepwalk With Me opens on August 24.
* = This of course all being completely tongue in cheek. If you didn’t catch that, then… dude, really?
By Richard Pepper