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“21 Jump Street” co-writer shares his “Scott Pilgrim” memories and the status of that Les Grossman movie

Tom Cruise

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21 Jump Street” is turning out to be a surprise hit among critics, who have been heaping praise on the film’s non-stop comedy and clever method of paying homage to the ’80s television series that inspired it.

IFC recently spoke to “21 Jump Street” co-writer Michael Bacall about the new movie, as well as a few of his past and future projects — including “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World” and a “Tropic Thunder” spinoff based on Tom Cruise’s media-mogul character, Les Grossman.

Describing his work on “Scott Pilgrim” as a “truly incredible experience,” Bacall said the big-screen adaptation of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s hit comic book series involved quite a bit of time on the set and in the editing room with co-writer and director Edgar Wright.

“[I was] fortunate to be on the set through the entirety of production, and had some occasional experiences watching Edgar edit the film, and I’m really proud of that movie,” he said. “I loved the audience, and I love hearing about people still discovering it on a regular basis.”

Bacall said the film’s lackluster performance at the box office — despite rave reviews from critics and fans alike — doesn’t get him down. The movie’s continued popularity well after its opening weekend is satisfaction enough.

“I live down the street from a theater called the New Beverly, and [‘Scott Pilgrim’] has become one of the resident midnight movies there,” he said. “It’s become really enjoyable for me to walk down the street and see the lines of people dressed up in Scott Pilgrim attire. That’s ultimately the most satisfying thing: to walk into a theater and see and hear people reacting to the film in a positive way. Overall, that was a highly positive experience for me.”

As for the as-yet-untitled film based on “Tropic Thunder” character Les Grossman, Bacall said he turned in an early draft of the script and is waiting to hear back from the studio.

“I turned a draft in to Paramount,” he said. “I worked on it with Tom Cruise and Ben Stiller, and those guys are really smart and had some really great ideas on how we could make the character sympathetic without making it sappy, and let him maintain his rage and his edge.”

“If I had to guess, I’d say that it’s highly dependent on what Mr. Cruise’s schedule looks like,” said Bacall when asked when we might see some movement on the project. “There’s an early draft out there that Paramount has right now, so we’ll see what happens.”

What do you think about Les Grossman getting his own movie? Chime in below or on Facebook or Twitter.

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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