What’s Next for the Stars of ‘Parks and Rec’?
The beloved sitcom Parks and Recreation has now wrapped up after its seventh season. While fans mourn losing Pawnee, Indiana, and its funny bunch of bureaucrats lead by the eternally optimistic Leslie Knope, here are the projects the show’s stars are headed on to next.
Offerman plays Ron Swanson, the manliest Libertarian on television who constantly clashes with Leslie over their personal beliefs, but will remain true to his friend to the end. Swanson consumed copious amounts of meat and whiskey while woodworking and hunting during his spare time. Offerman has been a bit typecast in the role, as it is based in part on him, so it will be interesting to see how the actor moves past it. The only upcoming project Offerman has on the horizon is the fantasy dramedy Welcome to Happiness, which is about a children’s book author who discovers that a mysterious door in his closet leads to a place that changes his life forever.
Comedian Aziz Ansari plays the would-be mogul Tom Haverford, who sticks out like a sore thumb acting like a Hollywood playboy in the small Midwestern city. Tom’s metrosexual ways (he buys Bumble & Bumble hair care products every eight days) and signature swagger are simultaneously annoying, endearing, and hilarious. Ansari doesn’t have any new shows or movies on the horizon at the time being aside from continuing his voice role on the animated comedy series Bob’s Burgers.
Rob Lowe played the ridiculously hyper-positive, exercise-obsessed Chris Traeger, the City Manager of Pawnee who believed he would live to be over a 100 years old due to his extremely healthy diet and borderline obscene workout regimen. For all of Traeger’s physical perfection, he was socially pretty awkward and had a way of making the other characters uncomfortable. The way he repeatedly thwarts Ben and Leslie’s early courtship in Season 3 is Traeger at his eccentric best. Lowe has already signed on to another TV show that Parks fans might enjoy. Apocalypse Slough will star Lowe and fellow Parks alum Megan Mullally (Tammy 2) as well as The Office‘s Jenna Fischer. It’s about a group of eccentric people dealing with the fact that a giant asteroid is about to hit Earth. In the series, Lowe will play a character described as “the Vatican’s most rebellious priest.” Lowe is also working on voice roles in two animated projects, the movie Monster Trucks and the show Moonbeam City.
Aubrey Plaza’s deadpan sarcastic humor as the Parks office intern April Ludgate has earned her plenty of attention, and last year she did a slew of movie projects on top of the show. She’ll continue that fast pace as Parks wraps up. Her next film is the indie comedy Fresno, about a pair of sisters who work as hotel maids in that city, which co-stars Judy Greer and Natasha Lyonne. After that, she’ll be seen in the drama The Driftless Area with Anton Yelchin and Zooey Deschanel about a bartender who returns to his hometown and ends up in a dangerous situation involving a strange woman and a criminal. Her most high-profile project won’t be seen until next year. In Dirty Grandpa, Plaza co-stars with Zac Efron and Robert De Niro in a raunchy comedy about a guy who has to give his perverted grandfather a ride to Florida for spring break. Lastly, the actress is currently filming The Public, an ensemble drama based on a true story about a librarian who allows some homeless to use the Los Angeles Public Library as a shelter during a cold snap.
Chris Pratt has probably seen the biggest career explosion of all the stars of Parks. He’s gone from playing the goofy, dumb, and husky but loveable Andy Dwyer, to dropping the excess weight and remaking himself into an action star. Last year he starred in Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, which was the highest-grossing movie of the year. This summer he’ll be seen in what’s likely to be another huge hit, the highly anticipated reboot of Jurassic Park, Jurassic World. Pratt’s next film will be a remake of the classic western The Magnificent Seven. So far only Pratt, Denzel Washington, and Haley Bennet have been added to that cast. In addition, Pratt’s rumored to be up to take on another classic Spielberg action movie role, replacing Harrison Ford in a reboot of the Indiana Jones franchise.
Scott plays Ben Wyatt, Leslie Knope’s nerdy and supportive husband who seems to constantly bounce between politics and accounting and serving as a human dartboard for Tom’s insults. Scott’s latest movie, Hot Tub Time Machine 2, just came out, but was a flop both with critics and at the box office. His next film will be very different from the comedies fans are used to seeing him in. Scott is co-starring alongside Johnny Depp and Benedict Cumberbatch in the upcoming mob drama Black Mass about the real-life Irish mobster Whitey Bulger. It will certainly be interesting to see how Scott handles a dramatic role.
Rashida Jones played the always supportive best friend of Leslie, Anne Perkins, who served as the straight man to Leslie’s crazy antics. Jones has already picked up another television show, this time one that she’ll star in and play a stronger character who will hopefully be less defined by the other people around her, which was a huge complaint with Anne. Angie Tribeca sees Jones playing the titular character, a tough and funny L.A. cop, in the series created by Steve and Nancy Carrel set to debut later this year. She also co-stars in the upcoming romantic dramedy Matters of the Heart with Patrick Wilson, Amy Smart, and Lynn Collins, and is currently working on a voice role for B.O.O.: Bureau of Otherworldly Operations with Seth Rogen and Melissa McCarthy.
Parks & Rec star Amy Poehler played Leslie Knope, the super-positive and always-hopeful glue that held the employees of City Hall as well as the city of Pawnee together during good times and bad. Poehler rose to fame on Saturday Night Live, most notably serving as a co-anchor on Weekend Update with her friend Tina Fey. The two have worked together frequently throughout their careers. Poehler’s next movie is the comedy Sisters, in which her and Fey play sisters who throw a massive party in the house they grew up in right before selling it. Poehler is also a voice in the upcoming Pixar movie Inside Out, which is about the inner conflicts a young girl goes through when her family moves across the country. Her struggles are illustrated through characters that play anthropomorphized versions of her emotions. Poehler is playing the voice of the emotion Joy.
Info about upcoming projects courtesy of the IMDb.
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