Are you ready to go all the way back to William McKinley High?
Been waiting nearly 20 years for a visit back to the Weir residence?
Ready for a return to the best series set in the 80s that’s more realistic than the Upside Down but still makes mention of Dungeons and Dragons?
Well, your prayers have been answered, because there’s a brand new addition to the Freaks & Geeks universe in the form of, Freaks and Geeks: The Documentary.
The film, which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival this week, was directed by Brent Hodge and will air on A&E in the US as part of their Cultureshock special.
The 72-minute piece of artistic closure offers fans a chance to explore the behind the scenes glory of their favourite show.
This documentary means so much to Freaks and Geeks fans because most of us are still trying to cope with the fact that the original series was axed by NBC after just the first season.
While Judd Apatow and Paul Feig’s follow up creation, Undeclared, was OK, it was never going to be able to compete with Freaks and Geeks.
Good news? The original series is still on Netflix now, so you can go home and binge the entire thing this week, because there are only 18 episodes after all.
The show didn’t just kick start the careers of most of the cast (Seth Rogen even wrote a few episodes himself) but gave us characters we could relate to on a totally un-cool, real level.
It made us squirm and feel uncomfortable, and that was important. It was also the point.
After the documentary’s NYC premiere, Feig sat down with director Hodge, and the two gave an entertaining and enlightening post-panel interview that has literally given me life.
Here’s what we know:
NBC wanted to hire Britney Spears to star on the show as a waitress because she was really popular at the time and they wanted a bit more pep and happiness peppered throughout the episodes.
Clearly, the entire point of the series was lost on the very network responsible for cancelling it after one series. Go figure.
A huge chunk of episodes were based off real-life experiences by the writers. They were all given questionnaires to fill out about their personal high school experiences.
“Before we started writing anything, we’d lock ourselves into a room for two weeks and would read out loud the questionnaire and then elaborate,” explained Feig. “That’s where the good stuff comes from.”
This even include Sam Weir’s powder blue Parisian night suit… oh dear.
Seth Rogen’s star episode “The Little Things” wasn’t an easy concept to get over the line. Remember when he was in love with Amy? The tuba player who may have been born with male genetalia? Feig said the first draft, which was written by Jonathan Kasdan, was quite “contentious” due to the subject matter.
“Everybody tried to get us to stop it, but then we all pitched in and started rewriting it and then, like it says in the documentary, Judd took Jessica and Seth into his office, and they started improv-in” said Feig. “You don’t want to back down from these stories, and that’s what the network hated.”
Feig also admitted James Franco was the most difficult actor to write for because he was the “cool guy”, and most of the writers couldn’t relate to the character.
Now, I can relate to that.
There’s more behind-the-scenes F&G footage than you can poke a light-saber at.
Gabe Sachs, one of the original writer-producers was constantly filming and taking photos during production of the original series, and has a ton of BTS clips just lyin’ around at home.
DEAR GOD MAN, GIVE THEM TO US.
There’s so much footage in fact that Feig said there could even be a second documentary on the cards.
Yes, yes, yes!
The wrap party for the final episode kinda turned into a graduation shindig for Seth Rogen, Martin Starr, and Samm Levine.
The documentary shows footage of Feig and Apatow handing out caps and gowns to all three of the boys on stage. Cute!
Freaks and Geeks: The Documentary will air later this year on A&E.
We are praying it gets released on Netflix sometime immediately, without it, our lives are not complete.