As we know Mark Duplass and his brother Jay are behind the new comedy coming to HBO on 01.11.15. They are prolific duo mostly in movies but have moved to TV fare with The League on FX and now with TOGETHERNESS. Mark himself places the lead. If you recall, it is about an extended family of sorts heading towards their 40’s and into stresses with their relationships.
Mr. Duplass was recently interviewed by IndieWire. There is more to the interview which can be read on that site, but here is what pertains to the new HBO comedy.
IndieWire: Like a lot of people in the industry, you’ve moved into television. I imagine much of your support for these more experimental things comes from “The League,” but now you’re doing your own show with Jay — a bigger show, called “Togetherness,” about couples. How did that happen?
Mark Duplass: HBO courted Jay and I for a while, saying, “You should really come make a show with us. You can do what you want here; this is a perfect place to make a show about inter-relationship dynamics and what you guys do.” We said, “We just don’t want to be stuck in TV. It seems like it takes forever, and we want to make movies.” They said, “Look, come make an eight-episode season with us. It’s like making a movie. I promise you: I know the shitty studio notes you get when you go to these other places. We will not do that to you. We will support you and let you make the show you want to make. You can count on us.”
So we were kind of like, “Well, that actually sounds pretty good.” And they were so true to their word. I thought I was going to be a career Miramax, Focus Features, Fox Searchlight type of filmmaker, but the reality is, those movies are not making as much money, so they’re clamping down on fear as to how they can be made and how they can make money. It really thwarts your ability to make the movie you want to make. In my opinion HBO has a subscription service, and people come to it because they’re going to watch “Game of Thrones”; you’re this other cool thing that adds value. They’re so open to what you can make, and they just said, “We’d like to make a show about couples in their ‘30s.” We built this thing and literally got to do whatever we wanted. It’s been amazing.
IW:You have Melanie Lynskey. Who else?
MD: So it’s myself and Melanie Lynskey. We play a married couple, and then it’s my longtime collaborator, Steve Zissis, who I went to high school with. He was in “The Do-Deca-Pentathlon,” he’s in “Jeff, Who Lives at Home,” he’s in “Baghead.” And then there’s Amanda Peet, who is also in the show. That’s going to air in January. It’ll air with “Girls.”
Okay, so it isn’t much to add to the upcoming series, but it gives us a tidbit of news to get us over the Holidays. Here is a little featurette in closing. Look for TOGETHERNESS debuting 01.11.15 at 9:30pm.