Travel consideration provided by STX Entertainment.
Outrageous, raunchy comedies are usually told through a male lens. So it was intriguing to me that the writers of The Hangover, Scott Moore and Jon Lucas, wrote and directed the upcoming female-driven film Bad Moms. And with powerhouse producer Suzanne Todd on board, it’s clear this was a story worth telling. When the trio joined us during the Bad Moms press conference in Los Angeles, I asked them if they saw this movie appealing to an untapped audience that wasn’t previously being catered to.
It wasn’t really a business decision in that way,” said Todd.
Not really,” agreed Moore. “I think when we started writing the script, it was just like, what is interesting around us? Spending a couple of years working on basically something that’s about my wife seemed interesting to me. If anything, our agencies tried to talk us off of it a little bit. There was a lot of politics.”
We definitely got the horrible note,” added Lucas. “We definitely got the note of could you do bad parents, where there’s a dad in there so the men will come. And we’re on the phone, we’re just like, ah, this is why. This is why I drink at night. (laughs)
And we were like no, it’s not funny if there’s a dad in there because it’s not about that guy,” continued Lucas. “Dads, we could do a whole other movie about dads if we wanted to. I don’t think it’s as funny because there are bad dads everywhere. And it’s just a bummer. It’s a bummer movie. But, Bad Moms is funny because ninety-nine percent of moms we know are really, really great moms. And so, a bad mom is funny, but a bad dad is not. Anyway, that note came through, in case you’re wondering. And of course, I’m sure none of you are surprised even remotely that there was that note at some point.
But, I will say to the studio’s credit, we went in, and we were honestly like, look, this movie caters to women, frankly not women who are 16 years old [that] the studios love to attract. To STX’s credit, they didn’t blink. They were like no, this is an audience. We hadn’t really thought if it from a commercial perspective exactly, but they were like no, this is an audience. They show up to movies. They’re actually a really loyal audience. I don’t know why there aren’t 50 movies made for women. They actually have money. They have time. They schedule sh*t. Like, they’re mom. Moms are like I’m going Friday at 10:15. They know. Tickets are already being presold right now because moms do this. This is how moms work. They don’t just like decide on Friday, like smoke a bowl and go to a movie. Like, they plan sh*t. They got to get a sitter. Maybe they’ll have a little nip, but…”
Todd also spoke to the moment during filming where they saw the material resonating.
I think there was a first inkling, because like Scott said, it wasn’t a business decision going in to try and hit that audience. We were shooting the PTA party scene, the ‘Meet the candidates’ scene. And it was pouring rain where we were. And we had all these extras literally in the worst version of crammed together under tarps, trying to keep people dry in between takes because normally you would be outside of the house, but it was raining, so you couldn’t.
And the extras were having the greatest time. They all listened to Mila give that speech about how she wanted to change things, and if you want to do less, vote for me. And it was like every extra started talking about [how] she couldn’t wait to see the movie. She was happy to work overtime. She didn’t mind being cramped in the rain because every single person thought that was their story. So, we started to get this kind of inkling early on that it was relatable to other people.”
Yes,” agreed Moore. “When she’s like, ‘Everyone who wants to do less’, and all the crowd cheers, and we’re like, no, you guys need to be quiet because you’re stepping on her lines. And so, the next take, it’s like ‘Everybody who wants to do less’. And they were cheering I want to do less! You’re like, no, you got to be quiet. (laughter)”
Bad Moms celebrates “Bad Mother’s Day” on July 29 – the Mother’s Day you really want and deserve! Get tickets now: BadMomsTickets.com