The Office writers Gene Stupnitsky and Lee Eisenberg may not have had much success (critically or financially) with the period comedy Year One, but that hasn’t stopped them for giving big-screen comedy another shot. As well as penning the script for the much-talked-about Ghostbusters III, the writing duo have also written a new (what looks to be) very R-rated comedy entitled Bad Teacher, and today we have the red band trailer for the film.
Directed by Jake Kasdan (Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story), Bad Teacher stars Cameron Diaz as, well, a bad teacher who swears like a trooper and generally treats her work (including her pupils) like crap. The story follows Diaz’s Elizabeth Halsey as she attempts to woo one of her fellow teachers (Justin Timberlake) while trying to get her class to achieve the best grades possible in order to win a huge bonus.
We had a strong idea from the start that Bad Teacher was going to be R-rated but I don’t think we expected it to be as hard-edged with its comedy as it is. As you’ll see from the red band trailer below, Stupnitsky and Eisenberg don’t shy away from giving Diaz some heavy profanity to casually deliver at every turn.
Check out the red band trailer below to see for yourself:
Although this isn’t the first time Diaz has swore a lot in a movie (see Very Bad Things and The Sweetest Thing as other examples), it’s really jarring to see her front and center like this where profanity seems almost the point of the whole thing. It’s very funny the way the swearing is used in the above trailer, but I worry that during the actual movie all that cursing will wear thin very quickly. Swearing can be hilarious, but only when it’s done well and not just abundantly thrown in there for the sake of being edgy.
The obvious comparisons for Bad Teacher are the Jack Black comedy School of Rock and Bad Santa, the absolutely hilarious R-rated comedy starring Billy Bob Thornton. It’s reminiscent of the latter not just because of the word “bad” in both titles, but because they both take a normally harmless profession (mall Santas and teachers) and gives it a risque edge, i.e., constant swearing and other publicly unacceptable behavior. I doubt Bad Teacher will match up to Bad Santa, but Teacher might be all-the-more shocking because it’s A-lister Diaz leading the way.
Interestingly, Bad Teacher reunites Diaz with her former real-life boyfriend Justin Timberlake; whether or not their off-screen relationship helps or hinders their chemistry in the film is hard to tell from just the trailer, but I imagine much attention will be paid to the fact that this reunites them after five years.
Also in the supporting cast is Jason Segel, who has been displaying most of his comedic talents on the CBS comedy How I Met Your Mother, but also wrote and starred in the hit film Forgetting Sarah Marshall. After Bad Teacher Segel will appear in the comedy Jeff Who Lives At Home, the action/comedy Undercover Cop and The Muppets (which he also co-wrote).
Hopefully the trailer for Bad Teacher hasn’t given all the best laughs away, as so many comedies do these days. The film may not turn out well, but at this point it looks pretty !@#$ funny.
Bad Teacher hits theaters on June 24th, 2011.