Judd Apatow is ready to take on a new challenge: directing a pilot. The acclaimed film director is joining forces with comedian Pete Holmes on a new HBO comedy, Crashing. According to Deadline, Apatow has agreed to helm the first episode, as well as executive produce alongside Holmes and Dave Rath.
The project is written by Holmes and loosely based on his own life. He’ll star as a nice guy comedian who needs a place to stay after his wife checks out of their marriage. While he figures out his next move, Holmes will couch surf his way through the homes of fellow New York comedians.
Although Apatow hasn’t directed a pilot before, he’s an executive producer on another HBO comedy, Lena Dunham’s Girls. He’s also well known for helming raunchy comedy flicks such as The 40-Year Old Virgin, Knocked Up, and Bridesmaids, to say nothing of the many projects he has worked on as a writer, producer, or actor. The multi-talented Holmes has also served as the host, writer, and executive producer of The Pete Holmes Show.
Apatow appeared in a skit on The Pete Holmes Show in early 2014, in the course of which Holmes actually pitched a comedy that sounds a lot like Crashing. He described to Apatow a religious guy who gets married young, only to have his wife cheat on him “with a small Italian man” several years later. During the skit, Apatow didn’t bite, calling the idea “tragic and sad” and rejecting it along with a few ridiculous concepts involving animal magicians.
When pitching failed, Holmes didn’t have any more luck trying to insert himself in one of Apatow’s projects with an acting role. “I don’t hold auditions. I just watch people on TV, and if I like them, I hire them,” deadpanned Apatow. Holmes asked if he’d seen The Pete Holmes Show, and Apatow shared that he’d seen an episode. A painfully awkward silence then ensued, as Holmes’ hopefulness turned to disappointment when he realized that Apatow wasn’t going to extend an offer.
Watch Apatow and Holmes hilarious skit from The Pete Holmes Show below.