Magazine article Variety

'Neighbors' Creatives Strike a Bargain

Magazine article Variety

'Neighbors' Creatives Strike a Bargain

Article excerpt

Although "Neighbors," the new comedy starring and produced by Seth Rogen, was fully financed by Universal Pictures, it reflects the need for a deft touch when navigating an original laffer within the studio system.

Writers Andrew Cohen and Brendan O'Brien brought the project to Rogen and producing partner Evan Goldberg, who immediately sparked to the idea, which revolves around suburban parents struggling to raise a toddler when a fraternity moves in next door.

U bought the pitch in 2011, and Nick Stoller signed on to direct. But getting execs to give the production the go-ahead was another matter. "It seemed like we were going to enter development hell," Rogen told Variety at SXSW. "We went into a phone call that we thought was going to be our green light, and we got a bunch of notes. We went back to the studio and said, 'What is the amount of money we can make this for where we stop having these conversations. …

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