July 15, 2005 at 04:00 AM EDT

The 40 Year-Old Virgin

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
runtime
113 minutes
Wide Release Date
08/19/05
performer
Steve Carell, Catherine Keener, Paul Rudd
director
Judd Apatow
distributor
Universal
author
Judd Apatow, Steve Carell
genre
Comedy

Every movie comes with its own marketing challenges. But how do you sell a comedy about a middle-aged dweeb (Steve Carell) who’s never had sex and whose biggest passion in life is his action-figure collection? Judd Apatow, co-writer-director of The 40-Year-Old Virgin, hopes he’s hit the bull’s-eye with the poster for his new film (which opens Aug. 19): ”There was one initial idea with Steve’s character in a box — he was a ‘no-action’ figure. Another was based on those suggestive cigarette and liquor ads from the ’60s and ’70s, where he was in a bar and everyone around him was doing something subtly sexual. But this idea was based on a Mentos ad where they have an odd-looking person staring into space. At first, I thought, Steve isn’t that famous — I don’t know if we can get away with some guy you don’t know just sitting there. Then [Universal] showed me the poster, and it makes you laugh the second you see it. Plus, a lot of the posters this summer are very dark, so to have a big, colorful poster helps. And I don’t know who thought of the tagline, ‘Better Late Than Never,’ but it gets it all across. You look at this poster and say, ‘There’s a lot going on in that demented mind.”’

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