Hollywood director/ producer Garry Marshall has a number of commercial and critical successes to his name. Among them are such classics as Happy Days and the television series based on playwright Neil Simon’sThe Odd Couple. More recently, it seems that Marshall is intent on making movies based on American holidays with as many famous people as he can cram onto the screen at one time. The 2010 film Valentine’s Day included Ashton Kutcher, Jessica Alba, Jennifer Garner, Julia Roberts, George Lopez, Bradley Cooper, Emma Roberts (Julia’s niece), Shirley MacLaine, Taylor Lautner, Taylor Swift, Jessica Biel, Queen Latifah, Jamie Foxx, Cathy Bates, Anne Hathaway, Topher Grace and Morgan Freeman, among others. Late in 2011, Marshall will release New Year’s Eve featuring appearances from Robert De Niro, Michelle Pfeiffer, Biel, Jon Bon Jovi, Zac Efron, Lea Michele, Katherine Heigl, Ludacris, Kutcher, Seth Meyers, Alyssa Milano, Sienna Miller, Parker, Ryan Seacrest, Hilary Swank, Sofía Vergara and Halle Berry (also among others). Both of these films revolve around the title holidays and are a series of vignettes exposing the romantic lives of the various characters and showing how they all relate to one another in some way. So it is at this point that I venture to guess what Marshall’s next film will be, who it will star, and what it will be about.
Perhaps it is the pumpkin pie in the air, but I would love to see Marshall’s Thanksgiving (hitting theatres in Fall 2012? Fingers crossed!) The cast should deviate from the previous two as much as possible, so the following are just a few suggestions for Mr. Marshall should he come across my humble article. Denzel Washington, Lance Armstrong, Jennifer Aniston, Will Ferrel, Ellen Page, Lebron James, Jack Black, Jim Carrey, Meryl Streep, Seth MacFarlane, Matt Stone and Trey Parker (they come as a pair), and Dame Judi Dench. The difficulty with this potential film is that Thanksgiving is such a family-oriented holiday that it would be tricky to create too many romantic relationships without getting into dangerous taboo territory. With that in mind I think it would have to be a very large and very unorthodox family (a la Modern Family) so that all kinds of romantic relationships could be made and then could all converge into one gigantic Thanksgiving Feast. Imagine a family that included Jack Black, Seth MacFarlane, Lebron James and Judi Dench all sitting at the same table eating turkey together. I would pay to see that. And Garry Marshall knows it.