Director Gene Stupnitsky has set his next feature. No Hard Feelings, starring Jennifer Lawrence, is set to hit theaters next year.
Stupnitsky made his feature directorial debut with 2019’s Good Boys from Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg’s company Point Grey Pictures. No Hard Feelings will follow in the same vein, telling a similar coming-of-age tale through a comedy-drama lens. He is no stranger to the director’s chair, previously working in television directing two episodes of The Office. Stupnitsky is penning the screenplay in collaboration with John Phillips.
Lead star Jennifer Lawrence is also attached as a producer with her company Excellent Cadaver. No Hard Feelings will mark the second Lawrence-led feature for her production company, after 2022’s acclaimed Causeway for Apple TV+. In addition to Lawrence, Naomi Odenkirk, Justine Polsky, and Marc Provissiero will serve as co-producers through Odenkirk Provissiero Entertainment. Sony Pictures Releasing won No Hard Feelings’ distribution rights after a major bidding war where they reportedly fended off big competition from Apple, Netflix, and Universal Pictures.
With that, let’s look at everything we currently know about Gene Stupnitsky’s No Hard Feelings. What can we expect from the story, and how will it mix up the standard “coming-of-age” formula? In addition to Jennifer Lawrence, who is lined up in the cast? When and where can we see the film when it is released? And what else should audiences know about No Hard Feelings?
No Hard Feelings: The Plot
Hints have leaked out about what story the film may tell, though exact plot details are currently being kept under wraps. The few released details have given a general idea of what to expect. The story is reportedly in the vein of comedies like the Cameron Diaz-led Bad Teacher and Tom Cruise’s Risky Business.
Lawrence’s lead character portrays a “ne’er-do-well” who is hired by a rich couple as a date for their introverted and socially awkward teen son who is preparing to go to college. The plot is also billed by Sony as an “R-rated comedy with heart.”
Since it is described as similar to Bad Teacher and Risky Business, those films could give us more potential plot details. Bad Teacher (which was co-written by Stupnitsky) revolved around a lazy and immoral teacher who hates her job and only teaches to make money for breast implants. Heading back to 1983, Risky Business centered on a teen who falls into illicit activities when home alone for a weekend.
Going off that and what we know about Lawrence’s character, we can assume that she will be a bad influence on the teenage son, bringing him out of his shell and into the real world. Their opposing worldviews will likely drive much of the film’s conflict forward. Additionally, the main premise of hiring a “date” for your son also has the comedic potential to go wrong in a number of ways.
This is still all speculation based on the few details we know, it’s possible that the actual plot could differ. Additional plot information will likely be revealed as production continues.
No Hard Feelings: The Cast
No Hard Feelings boasts an impressive roster of big names. We know that Jennifer Lawrence is lined up in the lead role, but who is joining her? Broadway actor Andrew Barth Feldman, known for a turn as the title character in Dear Evan Hansen and a TV spot on High School Musical: The Musical: The Series, is making his big screen debut as the teenage son and “boyfriend” of Lawrence.
Laura Benanti, also known for her work on Broadway, will be portraying the mom who initially contacts Lawrence’s character. Her husband and son’s father is played by one of the OG’s in the coming-of-age teen film genre, Ferris Bueller himself Matthew Broderick. None of the four lead characters have names attached as of this writing.
Outside the core cast, Ebon Moss-Bachrach of Hulu’s The Bear will be appearing in an unknown role. Natalie Morales of Netflix’s Dead to Me and Scott MacArthur from Fox’s comedy The Mick are also set to star. Their characters are unknown as well.
Other sources have names like Kyle Mooney and Hasan Minhaj possibly attached to the cast, but their involvement has not yet been confirmed. We can reasonably expect more cast announcements, as well as details on existing cast members’ characters, as we approach closer to the release date.