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Richard Linklater Says ‘That’s What I’m Talking About’ Will Come Out In Summer Or Fall, Calls It A “Party Movie” & Shares Details

Richard Linklater Says ‘That’s What I’m Talking About’ Will Come Out In Summer Or Fall, Calls It A "Party Movie" & Shares Details

Discussing Richard Linklater’s next film, “That’s What I’m Talking About,” can be tricky depending on who you’re talking about it with (or who you’re reading). He’s long called it a “spiritual sequel” to “Dazed And Confused,” which has led some to erroneously believe it’s a direct sequel (it’s not). And he’s also said it picks up where “Boyhood” leaves off, which has lead others to assume it’s an extension of that 12-year project (it certainly isn’t). Some have used strange and misleading headlines, like the new movie features “time travel” (it doesn’t). What we do know is that it follows a college freshman who starts rolling with the rowdy kids on the school baseball team, and in typical Linklater fashion, that’s probably just the loose backbone to a thematically rich movie.

In a recent Creative Screenwriting interview the “Boyhood” director clarified a bit more. “I think the word ‘spiritual’ gets me off the hook. It has nothing to do with ‘Dazed and Confused’ other than it would be set four years later, when one of the younger characters went off to college. It’s a party film.” Party film, check. Much like “Dazed And Confused,” but a decade later with different characters. In a recent WTF podcast interview with Marc Maron, Linklater shared a little bit more details of tone, spirit, and music.

First up, Linklater says the movie’s title is currently only a “working title,” so it could change closer to release (though to be fair his team was thinking about changing the “Boyhood” title too before Sundance, but it just ended up sticking). But when is coming out? “…probably be out next summer or fall,” Linklater said.

He then described some of cultural elements that made that era exciting, how music helped define identity, and how it will make its way into the movie. “You show up at college and you’re listening to Van Halen, but you go to discos to chase women. But then you end up at a punk club or a country bar because ‘Urban Cowboy’ was big at that time. All that stuff was on the table, so it’s an interesting cultural moment because they go to an art party and they’re listening to the Talking Heads, so it’s a cultural moment where, I’m like, ‘who am I?’ Am I punk? Am I new wave? Am I heavy metal?”

“It’s a wonderful ensemble, it’s a bit like ‘Dazed,’” Linklater said of his cast, which includes Tyler Hoechlin, Wyatt Russell, Ryan Guzman, Zoey Deutch, Will Brittain, Glen Powell, and Zoey Deutch. “A big ensemble of young actors none of which you probably know. {It’s] a lot of guys who’ve been around and you might recognize a few. You know, young actors are in all kinds of stuff.”

Asked how the footage looks, Linklater explained parts of what we’ll see. “There’s good energy, [scenes in] disco footage, punk clubs. Last night we shot at a punk club,” he said. We may see the punk group Riverboat Gamblers in the movie, as Linklater shot a scene with them covering “The Gilligan’s Island” theme song (he notes they ran through a few songs, though, so who knows).

What’s the “Boyhood” connection? Nothing more than a baton pass of coming-of-age tropes, another “spiritual” sequel if you will. And yes, it draws from autobiographical elements, as Linklater grew up playing baseball in college.

“It sort of begins right where ‘Boyhood’ ends: a guy goes off to college,” he explained. Will “Boyhood” star Ellar Coltrane appear? “No,” the filmmaker said, going on to explain the big differences in the tone and characters of his new movies. “That kid is kind of an artist kid. And my guys [the kids of this movie] are kind of jocks. They’re all on the baseball team. But they’re like witty. You know people tend to think athletes are kind of dumb, and some are, but there’s was a certain kind of energy and wit, particularly among the older guys [that I knew], so [the movie’s] trying to capture: they’re competitive jerks on one hand, but they’re really funny and witty on the other.”

Maron asks Linklater if “his” character is the young guy who’s mind gets blown? “A little bit, there’s several freshman [characters],” he said. “But you know, you gotta hold your own. So that’s the challenge to stick in there. But we’ll see.” We will indeed. Here’s hoping we get “That’s What I’m Talking About”or whatever he ultimately decides to call itsooner rather than later. Listen to Linklater’s full talk with Maron below.

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