HBO has announced that a remotely shot special called Costal Elites will be put into production, directed by Jay Roach (Trumbo, Bombshell, Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery) and written by Paul Rudnick (Adams Family Values, In & Out), per The Hollywood Reporter. The special will star big names like Bette Midler (The First Wives Club, Hocus Pocus), Kaitlyn Dever (Booksmart, Unbelievable), Issa Rae (Insecure, Little), Dan Levy (Schitt’s Creek, Admission), and Sarah Paulson (12 Years A Slave, Carol).
Set to premiere in September, the special will be about how people both in New York City and Los Angeles cope with the pandemic and politics that have dominated the news for the past two months. According to The Hollywood Reporter, “Coastal Elites will explore the current world of deeply divided politics and the universal pursuit of human connection through a series of confessionals from five main characters.” The name of the show suggests that it is most likely about the wealthy who live on the coast, bringing a somewhat satirical perspective to how the privileged are dealing with mental health amidst the quarantine and BLM movement.
Casey Bloys, the president of HBO programming, says of Roach and Rudnik: “[They] bring their razor-sharp perspective and wit to HBO. We are thrilled to partner with them in telling this story, which is uniquely resonant for these times” (The Hollywood Reporter). This “wit” that Bloys speaks of hints at a mockumentary-style special in which the audience can clearly see – and potentially laugh at – how privileged people cope when their normal lives are interrupted. The Coastal Elites special is one of the first forms of entertainment media to address the dramatic events currently affecting the world, and it may set a precedent for other shows and movies to begin offering their own perspective of both the pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement.