Hollywood, like football (at least according to Oliver Stone), is a game of inches.
Sure, there are people who arrive with their first film, fully formed and lucky enough to connect with the public in a way that means that they never have to struggle. But those people are what we call “freaks,” and for the most part, people in the film industry have to make their way from job to job, gradually climbing the food chain, until they are able to call the shots for themselves.
“Road To Nardo” could represent a major jump forward for at least two of the major collaborators in the film, and I’m curious to see how it comes together. The first reason I’m curious is T.J. Miller, a comedian who has been steadily building a resume since he first appeared in “Cloverfield.” Miller is very funny when you see him onstage, and I’m not sure I’ve seen a film yet that uses him to anywhere near his full potential. My kids are big fans after “Yogi Bear,” but that’s hardly representative of the sort of work he does as a stand-up.
The second reason is Scot Armstrong, who has been one of the writers in the mix on movies like “Road Trip,” “Old School,” “Starsky & Hutch,” “School For Scoundrels,” and “The Hangover Part II.” Hmmmm, I detect a bit of a trend in those titles. My favorite of his produced scripts, though, is “Semi-Pro,” a comedy I think is actually fairly underrated, and I am curious to see what Armstrong does on his own now. I’m guessing the success of “The Hangover Part II” gave him the commercial clout to get this one greenlit, since it sounds like “Road To Nardo” falls loosely into the same type of comedy.
In the film, Miller will star as one of two roommates who embark on a crazy road trip to rescue their friend Nardo who calls them to say that he’s trapped in Mexico and completely naked.
If there’s one thing Armstrong gets as a comedy writer, it is the way guys behave together, and especially the ways they behave badly. This sounds like it is exactly the sort of thing he can do well, and Miller is a great choice for one of the roommates. I don’t expect this to be one of the ten Oscar nominees for 2012, but I do hope that it represents Armstrong’s voice unfiltered, and that it takes that premise and delivers some major laughs.
I’m sure we’ll hear news on the rest of the cast soon.