These dudes are cold, shiny, hard plastic: ‘Mean Boys’
Watch this, then imagine a guy playing the Amanda Seyfried character (who would’ve thought she’d arguably be the biggest star from this movie today?). Just over a week after October 3rd, the Mean Girls jokes are about to start anew, because this weekend, PW Upspace will be playing host to “Mean Boys,” a gender-flipping table read of the 2004 film. Yes, you read that right: guys will be playing the Plastics, and girls will be playing the guys.
Tristan Rodman ’15 and Tarek Shoukri ’15, who are co-directing and co-producing the read, were inspired by a series of live table reads that director Jason Reitman put on at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The series featured classic and cult movies that were read by high-profile actors—Rodman was able to catch the reading of The Big Lebowski in which Seth Rogen played The Dude. Together, Rodman and Shoukri were determined to bring something similar back to Brown’s campus: “After brainstorming for a long, long while (read: all summer), we settled on Mean Girls because of its emergent status as the high school movie for our generation.”
As the defining movie of our teenage years with an enormous cult following, the table read of Mean Girls would have been enough. But the decision to gender-swap the cast takes our favorite movie and brings it to a whole new level. Rodman and Shoukri explain that the idea “came from the desire to make the performance its own, as unique as possible—we didn’t just want this to be a poor re-creation of the film, but a fun and new experience in and of itself.”
This table read, without a doubt, will be far from a basic reenactment of the film; the awesome cast will put on a hilarious show, and you’ll enjoy every second of it.
Who are the Plastics? They’re teen royalty. Michael Goodman ’13—who Rodman describes as being “totally incapable of finding something funny without riffing on it, which is far from a bad thing”—does his best still-functional Lindsay Lohan as Cady Heron (if she’s from Africa, why is she white?); evil takes a human form in Greg Nissan ’15, who plays über-bitch Regina George; Race Archibold ’15 plays multiple Fendi purse-toting Gretchen Weiners (she’s totally rich because her dad invented Toaster Strudel); and Nate Huether ’15 plays the ESPN-endowed Karen Smith (she’s a mouse, duh).
The greatest people you will ever meet. Michael Gale ’14 plays Janis Ian (her wig is made of your mom’s chest hair); Cheno Pinter ’14 plays Damian (he’s too gay to function).
Rounding out the cast, Christina Ames ’15 plays the excessively objectified object of Cady’s and Regina’s desires, Aaron Samuels (your face smells like peppermint!); Todd Baker ’15 does his best Tina Fey as Ms. Norbury (she’s a pusher, but definitely not a drug pusher); Jack Usher ’15 plays both Mrs. Heron – THIS IS THE FERTILITY VASE OF THE NDEBELE TRIBE! WHO ARE YOU? – and Mrs. George (Can I get you guys anything? Some snacks? A condom? Let me know!); and our very own Sarah Weiss ’15 pulls off the extraordinary trio of Mr. Duvall, Mr. Heron, and, probably most importantly, the rapper/math nerd Kevin Gnapoor. All you sucka MCs ain’t got nothing on him.
The table read is at 8:00 p.m. tonight and tomorrow night in the PW Upspace. The directors suggest that you get there 10-15 minutes early to get a seat, because a movie this quotable is sure to draw a crowd. Get in loser, we’re going shopping.