James Franco announced on his Twitter and Instagram pages today that his long-gestating documentary Saturday Night, which takes fans behind-the-scenes of NBC's Saturday Night Live, will finally see the light of day, premiering on Hulu Plus Friday, September 26.
THE SNL DOCUMENTARY is finally coming out!!! On HULU! This FRIDAY! Watch my documentary about the… http://t.co/i9D6ebVKwR— James Franco (@JamesFrancoTV) September 24, 2014
"THE SNL DOCUMENTARY is finally coming out!!! On HULU! This FRIDAY! Watch my documentary about the history of @nbcsnl Saturday Night on #hulu Plus: [link] #tizzlewizzl"
The Saturday Night documentary came about when James Franco was given access to Saturday Night Live tapings for one of his NYU graduate school film classes. He shot the documentary as a grad school project, with the 90-minute film chronicling the December 8, 2008 Saturday Night Live episode, hosted by John Malkovich.
"It's something I'm very proud of and it got a great response at the festivals we took it to. We had to add extra screenings at South By Southwest because people liked it so much. It's one of those projects that I had to be ... not sneaky, but the way I got that access, I had to go and shoot before I had everything signed off. Meaning that I kind of went to them because I had a good relationship with Lorne Michaels and the "SNL" people. And it started as a class project, which is how the door opened and they said, 'OK, an NYU project? Sure!'
And then I realized I had all of this access that people had never been granted before. And I thought, Well, heck, I'm not just going to waste this as a class project. This could be something interesting about comedy and creativity and the show. So, we shot a feature and put it together -- and then we had to go back and first get all of the performers to sign off, which they did. And then Lorne to sign off. But then we had to get NBC to sign off. And then NBC has some big turnover of executives, so the people who had signed off before were no longer there -- so we had to get new people to sign off. And then blah, blah, blah, blah blah."
He also revealed in that interview that Focus Features picked up the film last year, but it isn't known if this Hulu debut will coincide with a theatrical release from Focus or not.