MALIBU, California — If recent Hollywood history has taught us anything, it's that you will never go broke overestimating the public's thirst for comedy based on a perpetual state of adolescence.
From a middle-age man looking to lose his virginity, to a thirtysomething meeting the parents, to a group of guys starting a fraternity, modern comedy often focuses on male protagonists stuck in various stages of arrested development.
Fret not, ladies. Fire up your pit grills, pick out a sexy bikini, and don't forget to practice your keg stands — you're about to share in the hijinks and collegiate capers with 2007's "Spring Breakdown," an upcoming film from director Ryan Shiraki and writer/ "Saturday Night Live" alum Rachel Dratch.
"What we were trying to do is, like, in all these dude movies you have regular guys hooking up with these total hottie ladies," Dratch dished during a recent visit to the Malibu set. "So Ryan's idea was to flip that. It's finally the regular chicks hooking up with the super-hot dudes. We are turning the tables on the whole Hollywood gender problem."
Dratch is joined in the land of studs and Buds by former "SNL" castmate Amy Poehler and Parker Posey as three friends who take an unexpected trip to a stereotypical spring-break destination. When life gave them lemons, these girls made citrus coolers.
"The plot [follows] three women who are college friends — who didn't have the greatest time in college — [who] get to go to spring break and kind of live the college experience they never really had," Dratch revealed. "We each have our sort of troubles. Parker has work troubles, Amy was never the popular girl, and [I] never had the romance of it all."
For Dratch, who admitted that she wasn't too wild in her college days, the world of spring break was a buffet of new experiences — from the salad bar of foam parties to the bread line of keg stands.
"I just did my first keg stand right now," Dratch said on set. "What I didn't know is that there are two dudes lifting you up, so you really don't have to have the arm strength I was fearing [I would need]. When it goes up your nose, it really hurts."
Joining the threesome in their quest to leave no hot bod unturned is Missi Pyle as Charlene, a hotel owner who has "done spring break about 18 times" after she showed up for vacation in high school and decided to never leave. According to Pyle, studying up on being the ultimate party girl took rigorous effort and determined dedication to her craft.
"I did a lot of research. I felt like I needed to before I started this film," the 33-year-old actress joked. "I drank a lot of beer; I had never done that before, so I did that. And I have massaged a lot of oil on bodies. Because my character likes the guys, she has been around the block a few times. So I was loving a lot of people before I started shooting — I made out with everybody on the set, just for my character."
Also on set were Jana Kramer, Sophie Monk and "Laguna Beach" star Kristin Cavallari (see "Kristin Cavallari Gets Her Mean Girl On In 'Spring Breakdown' ") as three of the illustrious "Sevens." "The hot girls," Poehler explained, adding that in the flick, her character "kind of falls into their graces and gets caught up in it."
As the leader of the group, Monk is out to prove that nothing in life is nearly as fun as being young, hot, popular and on the beach.
"It's just fun because it's so ridiculous — we're wearing bikinis and high heels and just being such bitches," she said. "It's so unrealistic and not accepted that we can go way overboard."
Overboard is where a lot of fans of "Laguna Beach" would like to throw Cavallari, who perfected the rich, spoiled brat routine for two seasons on the hit MTV show. Despite the obvious links to her Sevens character, however, Cavallari admits learning a lot about acting from her elder costars.
"It's been such a learning experience," the 19-year-old actress reported. "Amy's been great about helping us out. We're all so much younger and we don't nearly have as much experience as Amy. So she's been helping us out with timing, and the beats and all that good stuff."
Life's a beach, it seems — but it's not all fun and sun on the set. "Spring break would be my nightmare," Dratch finally confessed. "We thought about going down to do a little research, but we didn't have time. ['Spring Breakdown'] is not completely authentic." But, she added, "There's hot babes," of course.
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