Family and John Hughes Inspire Disney’s ALEXANDER AND THE TERRIBLE, HORRIBLE, NO GOOD, VERY BAD DAY

Disney’s “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” is the new film adaptation based on the children’s book by Judith Viorst.  The story revolves around an 11-year-old Alexander as he experiences, what feels like the worst day of his young life.  When Alexander tells his family about his disastrous day, he finds very little sympathy and begins to wonder if bad things only happen to him.  As it turns out, the following day is Alexander’s birthday and he decides to make a birthday wish: maybe the rest of his family can experience a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.  Of course, like most birthday wishes in the world of movies, this one comes true.

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

(L-R) ANTHONY (Dylan Minnette), BEN (Steve Carell), EMILY (Kerris Dorsey) and ALEXANDER (Ed Oxenbould). Photo by: Dale Robinette. ©2014 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

 

On September 27th, Walt Disney Studios held a press junket for the film which included panels with Lisa Henson (producer), Dan Levine (Producer), Miguel Arteta (Director), Rob Lieber (Writer) and the cast: Steve Carell, Jennifer Garner, Ed Oxenbould, Kerris Dorsey, Dylan Minnette and Bella Thorne.  They were all there to answer any questions from the invited members of the press and were very open to talking about the making of the film.

ALEXANDER AND THE TERRIBLE, HORRIBLE, NO GOOD, VERY BAD DAY

(L-R) Director Miguel Arteta, Producer Dan Levine, Producer Lisa Henson and Writer Rob Lieber, photo by Patrick Wymore. ©2014 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

 

Throughout the course of the event, Director Miguel Arteta talked about his love for the films of John Hughes (Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, The Breakfast Club), whose influence is very strong in the film.  He talked about how he believed John Hughes knew how to inject “a feeling more authentic than most Hollywood films” and that this was something that he wanted to do in his movie.  He also stated that Hughes’ film Sixteen Candles was one that he watched in preparation for the making of “Alexander.”

When talking about the casting of the leading role of Alexander Cooper, the director stated that he was very impressed with actor Ed Oxenbould’s “generosity of heart” and his way of always feeling “happy for other people.”

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

(L-R) Director Miguel Arteta and actor Ed Oxenbould attends The World Premiere of Disney’s “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” at the El Capitan Theatre on October 6, 2014, photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez, courtesy Walt Disney Studios

 

When asked about the difficulties of adapting a 32 page book into a film that runs for about 81 mins, screenwriter Rob Lieber talked about the book being only about Alexander having a very bad day and thought it would be an interesting concept to bring the story one step further and explore what would happen if the rest of the family also experienced a horrible day.  This, of course, opens up a world of possibilities in the way of comedy.

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Actor Steve Carell had nothing but praise for the director, saying, “… for a movie like this, that could have very easily been straight down the middle… He (Miguel Arteta) brought a very human quality to it.”  He also talked about how the cast very quickly became friends, and how it “felt like a family…” which is how he prefers it to be when working with an ensemble.

ALEXANDER AND THE TERRIBLE, HORRIBLE, NO GOOD, VERY BAD DAY

(L-R) Jennifer Garner, Bella Thorne, Dylan Minnette, Ed Oxenbould, Kerris Dorsey and Steve Carell, photo by Patrick Wymore, ©2014 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

 

Jennifer Garner mentioned the book is a mainstay in her home and expressed her excitement for “being a part of a real family movie that’s going out into the world.”  She also stated that it is a film that families can see together and she hopes afterwards they will feel more like a family and will remind them “that no matter what happens, you’re all going through it together.”

ALEXANDER AND THE TERRIBLE, HORRIBLE, NO GOOD, VERY BAD DAY

Actors Steve Carell and Jennifer Garner attend The World Premiere of Disney’s “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” at the El Capitan Theatre on October 6, 2014, photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez, courtesy Walt Disney Studios.

 

“Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” opens in wide release on Friday October 10, 2014, click here for all our images, news, and trailers for the film.  For more family movie news, be sure to follow Adventures by Daddy on twitter and “like” our facebook page too.

About Mark Oguschewitz

Mark Oguschewitz moved to Los Angeles, California after graduating with a film degree from Columbia College in Chicago, Ill. Pursuing a career in the industry, Mark became an award winning freelance editor. He is also known for being the creative consultant for the podcast "Skywalking through Neverland" and co-host of the Podcast "Talking Apes TV." Mark's short film "Gourmet" took the Best Micro-Short honor at the International Horror and Sci-Fi film festival in 2007. His spare time is all about movies. It's not just entertainment, but has become more of a real passion, as he tries to see everything he can. Art house or Blockbuster – It doesn't matter, he loves them all.