The Trailer For Mindy Kaling’s New Movie ‘Late Night’ Is Here

Writer and actress Mindy Kaling has a new movie, Late Night, coming out. The first trailer for the film is here, and it’s enough to get fans of her work excited. Here’s what you need to know about the new movie, its stars, and why this is the subject Mindy chose for her feature film writing debut.

Mindy Kaling speaks onstage
Mindy Kaling | Phillip Faraone/Getty Images for Stella Artois

What is Late Night about?

Late Night stars Kaling as Molly Patel, who joins the writing staff of a popular late night talk show. As with much of entertainment, the writing staff is made up of white males, making Molly’s hiring as a woman of color even more notable. The host, Katherine Newbury (played by Emma Thompson) is at risk of losing her job, so it’s up to Molly to help her change things up in order to bring in an audience.

Late Night will be available for viewing on Amazon Prime

Kaling’s film, which is directed by Nisha Ganatra (Transparent), first premiered at Sundance Film Festival in Jan. 2019. The movie sparked an all-night bidding war, with Amazon coming out on top. The film cost Amazon a whopping $13 million to secure the rights.

Now, Late Night has an official premiere date: June 7, 2019. This is when it will begin its theatrical run. After this, it will be available for streaming on Amazon Prime. This deal is similar to the one that Amazon struck with The Big Sick, the semi-autobiographical rom-com from Kumail Nanjiani.

Here’s what we learned from the trailer

Though the premise of the film is fairly straightforward, the trailer offered a bit more insight. Molly begins working on Tonight With Katherine Newbury, constantly striving to offer something unique amidst the hosts less-than-diverse writing staff. Newbury is, predictably, a no-holds-barred kind of person, frequently firing staff members for little reason. So when Molly comes along, she realizes this could be the person to improve her ratings and help her keep her show.

John Lithgow stars as Katherine’s husband, Walter. The cast also includes some of Kaling’s past co-stars, including Ike Barinholtz (The Mindy Project) and Amy Ryan (The Office), as well as Veep’s Reid Scott and Hugh Dancy (Hannibal).  

Mindy Kaling talks about Late Night

Speaking to Seth Meyers, who, not coincidentally, is the host of Late Night With Seth Meyers, Mindy discussed the subject of the film as well as what it was like working with the acclaimed actress Thompson. Kaling called the Oscar-winner “unbelievable,” noting that in real life, there has yet to be a female late night talk show host, good or bad.

The film draws on Kaling’s personal experiences

Though it’s a work of fiction, Late Night does, without a doubt, reflect some of what the writer has been through. Kaling was a writer on The Office from the very beginning of the series, in addition to playing Kelly Kapoor. With The Mindy Project, she was the creator, star, and, often, a writer. So she had a lot of experience as a woman of color in entertainment to draw from.

“Obviously I’m making a comedy movie, so things are exaggerated for comic effect, but similar things have happened to me in my career,” Kaling told Variety. “It’s not so much that the people in the film that I portray are bigoted. They’ve just been sheltered by the status quo. And every one of these people in the movie change. They’re not evil. They evolve.”

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