Judd Apatow is everywhere these days. The wildly successful producer, writer and director and his wife Leslie Mann were on the cover of the New York Times magazine last month. He also was part of The Hollywood Reporter's Screenwriters Round Table. And his whole family – including this wife and two daughters — appear in Apatow’s This is 40, based on his real life.
Now the man who brought us Knocked Up, 40-Year-Old Virgin, Funny People, Get Him To The Greek, Forgetting Sarah Marshall and Bridesmaids has guest edited Vanity Fair’s first ever comedy issue.
On one of the three (yes, three) covers for the issue, his adorable wife wears a bikini and tattoos to look like vintage Goldie Hawn on Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In. Melissa McCarthy plays Lily Tomlin’s Edith Anne character, Paul Rudd dresses up as a shiny-suited variety showman and Megan Fox (wait, how'd she get in there?) is costumed as a sexy bellhop, circa Jerry Lewis comedies.
But wait, there’s more. A second cover features Jim Carrey as a jumpsuited Evel Knievel, Maya Rudolph doing her best rendition of Steve Martin’s King Tut, Will Ferrell as a corn-poking cowboy, and Amy Poehler, who dona a mirrored minidress as a 1960s cage dancer. And on the third cover, Kristen Wiig and Ben Stiller channel Sonny and Cher with Chris Rock pulling off Nipsey Russell and Jerry Seinfeld wearing sideburns and a Nehru jacket, velvet trousers, looking like an inspiration for Austin Powers sans the bad teeth.
Conan O’Brien, Lena Dunham, Zach Galifianakis, Steve Martin, Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner were also impelled to appear in the comedy issue by Apatow. Louis C.K. answers the Proust Questionnaire, and Jimmy Fallon stars in the "Out to Lunch" column
The cover and inside photos were all shot by Mark Seliger and boy, would we have loved to be a fly on the wall for these shoots. We can only hope and pray for some behind-the-scenes video.
Apatow is only the third guest editor. Tom Ford was first for the Hollywood Portfolio issue in 2007 and rock star philanthropist Bono was second, responsible for the Africa issue in July 200.
VF editor Graydon Carter explains the current comedy bent: “It can reasonably be said that the comedy industry is booming these days, in movies, on television and onstage. And who better to oversee an entire issue on the subject than one of the great impresarios of the business? . . . Judd was a terrific collaborator, brimming with suggestions and infectious energy — precisely the sort of high-wattage, Hollywood-style enthusiasm that can alternately excite you and drive you a bit crazy.”