“My favorite kind of comedy is not only laugh-out-loud funny but has a lot of heart and even a note of poignancy,” says director Jason Winer, one of the creative forces behind the award-winning series “Modern Family,” marking his feature directorial debut with Warner Bros.' new comedy “Arthur.” “I love stories about characters we can root for as they try to become better people.”
It was these elements that made the idea of a modern “Arthur” so appealing to Winer, as well as the belief that “there’s a whole generation of people who don’t know this story and will be experiencing it for the first time, in a way that feels contemporary and fresh. And for fans of the original—myself included—it’s also something new, not an imitation but a re-imagining, with its own humor and emotion.”
In this fresh new look at a classic story, Russell Brand re-invents the role of loveable billionaire Arthur Bach, an irresponsible charmer who has always relied on two things to get by: his limitless fortune and the good sense of lifelong nanny Hobson (Academy Award winner Helen Mirren) to keep him out of trouble.
Now he faces his biggest challenge—choosing between an arranged marriage to ambitious corporate exec Susan (Jennifer Garner), that will ensure his lavish lifestyle, or an uncertain future with the one thing money can’t buy, Naomi (Greta Gerwig), the woman he really loves.
As Arthur deals with this pressing decision, it raises larger and more pertinent questions about what he plans to make of his life and what he really wants. Does he have the courage to follow his heart, choose love and be a man…or will he surrender to more of what Hobson tartly calls “your safari into the pointless”?
For Arthur, that will be no simple challenge. “This is a guy who has successfully extended his adolescence indefinitely,” notes producer Kevin McCormick. “I think there’s a part of all of us that wishes we could wake up every day like that—full of enthusiasm and with limitless possibilities for fun, provided by endless amounts of cash.”
Screenwriter Peter Baynham, an Oscar nominee for his work on “Borat,” says, “What I like about ‘Arthur’ is its many facets. It goes beyond the boy-meets-girl romantic comedy structure with an equally engaging connection between Arthur and Hobson; it’s a coming-of-age story as well as a romance.”
“Essentially it’s a feel-good romantic comedy about an eccentric, incredibly lovable and innocent character, a big kid at heart, who’s finding his way in the world,” says Winer. “There’s a lot of broad, physical comedy but also some touching moments between Arthur and the special women in his life.”
Ultimately, adds Brand, “It’s about how love inspires us to be our best selves.”
Opening soon across the Philippines, “Arthur” will be distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.