Showtime’s new 10-episode anthology from the Duplass Brothers (Baghead) is called Cinema Toast. It will “re-dub and re-shape” old public domain footage into what creator Jeff Barna calls “transcendent that extends beyond just a comedic curio.”
The series is a post-modernist reinvention of older movies. One that turns pre-existing imagery from the public domain on its head to tell brand new unique stories.
Voices actors include Alison Brie (Community), Nick Offerman (Parks & Rec), and Fred Armisen (Portlandia). Plus, John Early (Search Party), Christina Ricci (Casper), Megan Mullally (Party Down), Chloe Fineman (SNL), and Chris Meloni (Happy).
Episodes will cover a range of genres, including horror, comedy, and drama. Aubrey Plaza will helm an episode. So will Marta Cunningham, Mel Eslyn, and Alex Ross Perry.
Aubrey Plaza’s psychological thriller Quiet Illness pieces together footage of Loretta Young to create a portrait of an emotionally tortured modern woman.
Marta Cunningham’s episode is Attack of the Karens. It shows how timely Night of the Living Dead is. Especially when re-contextualized within this last year in America.
Mel Eslyn’s After the End injects the beloved monster movie Beast From Haunted Cave with a mumblecore comedy sensibility.
And with Report on the Canine Auto-Mechanical Soviet Threat, Perry creates a surreal journey from Soviet rarities. It’s about a young boy immersed in a new reality with talking cars and telepathic dogs.
Baena will also direct with Jay Duplass, Numa Perrier, Jordan Firstman, Kris Rey, and David Lowery. Duplass Brothers Productions produces the series created by Baena.
Jay and Mark Duplass (Creep) will executive produce with Eslyn, Baena, and also Tyler Romary. Shuli Harel serves as a producer. All 10 episodes of the series will premiere at once on Showtime on-demand streaming and partner platforms on April 20th.
Mark your calendars.
Baena says: “When the pandemic first hit and all paths to traditional production seemed unlikely at best. So I racked my brain to find a way to still create. That’s when the idea hit me. Re-dub and re-shape old material into something transcendent that extends beyond just a comedic curio.”
Are you up for this new Duplass Brothers anthology series?