Client: Lil Rel Howery - Talent
Following its premiere on Hulu this past weekend, 20th Century’s Vacation Friends has become the most the most watched original film in its opening weekend on the streamer to date. Deadline has also exclusively learned that writer-director Clay Tarver will return to write and direct Honeymoon Friends, a sequel that will reunite the main cast and producer Todd Garner.
Directed by Tarver and co-written by Jonathan Goldstein, John Francis Daley, Tim and Tom Mullens, Vacation Friends follows a couple (Lil Rey Howery, Yvonne Orji) who meets up with another couple (John Cena, Meredith Hagner) while on vacation in Mexico, only to see their friendship takes an awkward turn when they get back home.
This is an encouraging sign as the team at 20th Century Studios ramps up its slate of films for the company’s streaming services. The Disney-owned studio led by Steve Asbell has a number of features in the works that will stream as Hulu Originals in the U.S. and as Star Originals on Disney+ internationally including the suspense thriller No Exit, The Princess starring Joey King, and the Shakespeare-inspired romantic comedy Rosaline starring Kaitlyn Dever.
Theatrically, 20th Century is coming off the success of its original comedy Free Guy, which has overachieved pandemic box office trends to become one of the year’s biggest hits of the year for an original piece of IP, with nearly $80 million in domestic box office, more than $180M worldwide and a sequel already in development.