Mark Wahlberg reunites with his Daddy's Home 1 & 2 director Sean Anders for Instant Family, a comedy inspired by Anders and his wife's real life experience adopting three children at once. Wahlberg is joined onscreen here by a cast that includes Rose Byrne (Neighbors 1 & 2), Oscar-winner Octavia Spencer (The Shape of Water), Tig Notaro (One Mississippi) and Wahlberg's Transformers: The Last Knight costar Isabela Moner (also now known as the live-action Dora the Explorer) in leading roles.
Written by Anders and his longtime collaborator John Morris, Instant Family reveals what happens when childless married couple Pete (Wahlberg) and Ellie (Byrne) decide to adopt teenaged foster kid Lizzy (Moner) - unaware that she comes pre-packaged (so to speak) with two younger siblings. Nevertheless, Pete and Ellie decide to jump right into the deep end of the pool by becoming foster parents to three very different - but, in their own ways, equally challenging - kids at the same time.
Paramount Pictures originally had Instant Family scheduled to hit theaters next February, but decided to bump the movie up to November a month ago, in response to positive test screening reactions (h/t Variety). The studio has further gone ahead and released the first full-length trailer for the film online, along with a first look image exclusive to EW. Check out the latter above, then watch the official trailer below.
As it now stands, Anders' latest comedy will serve as counter-programming to the big-budget Wizarding World sequel Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald and Steve McQueen's dramatic crime thriller Widows during its box office opening weekend. The competition is only going to get more intense fives days later (on the pre-Thanksgiving Wednesday), when Disney's animated sequel Ralph Breaks the Internet shows up and targets the same all-ages comedy demographic that Instant Family appears to be going for.
The Daddy's Home films carved out sizable pieces of box office pie for themselves back when they hit theaters over the 2015 and 2017 winter holidays, respectively, and Instant Family may yet succeed in doing the same. Anders' latest feature seems to offer a more family-friendly type of broad humor than the Daddy's Home movies (plus an extra helping of heart... or possibly just saccharine drama), so that may further aid its cause at the box office. Beyond that, Instant Family is clearly a more personal venture for Anders and may prove to be one of his best comedy efforts yet, as a result.
- Instant Family (2018) release date: Nov 16, 2018