Teen Stuck in a ‘Groundhog Day’ Scenario in ‘Premature’
Could there be a worse situation to repeat than a mundane holiday like Groundhog Day? Writer Dan Beers thinks so, and coming up with something embarrassing was how he landed on the idea for Premature, a new teen comedy.
Premature, which is being marketed as American Pie meets Groundhog Day, stars John Karna as Rob, a high schooler who is forced to repeat the same day over and over again, each time coming extremely close to losing his virginity but getting interrupted by his mom, only to have the day reset.
“We were thinking of a Groundhog Day-type loop structure, but what would be the most embarrassing thing you would have to actually go through every time?” Beers said to Entertainment Weekly. “Having to actually fail to have sex for the first time over and over again. Matt had the idea of instead of having the clock radio going off, as in Groundhog Day, the mom comes in, [finds him in that exposed position], and says that one line over and over again.”
Repeating the day helps Rob try out different ways to navigate high school bullies as well as attempt to nail his college interview at Georgetown, with an admissions officer played by Alan Tudyk.
When the film premiered at SXSW, The Hollywood Reporter wrote that the “enjoyable but lightweight teen comedy is less novel than expected.” Indiewire gave it a B, saying that, for the most part, “Premature maintains a consistently enjoyable feeling due to a shrewd script that foregrounds the genuine emotional connection between the characters in spite of the ubiquitous silliness around them.”
Beers is best known for FCU: Fact Checkers Unit, a short film starring Bill Murray (easy to see why he can’t get Groundhog Day off his mind) that was featured at the Sundance Film Festival in 2008 and later became a branded entertainment series for Samsung. Beers teamed up with Mathew Harawitz, who’s been a writer on various sitcoms and comedy shows, including Go On, Whitney, Mind of Mencia, and The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn.
There may be some familiarity in the role for Karna, who also starred in the 2012 comedy Bindlestiffs about three high school virgins who get suspended from school and head to the city to live out the plot of The Catcher in the Rye. Premature will be released on Video On Demand on July 1 and in theaters on July 2.