'Community': Joel McHale on Yahoo Screen, His Salary and 'Epic' Movie Plans

1:27 PM PST 07/11/2014 by Ryan Gajewski
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank

The actor tells THR he's "so excited" about the show's latest resurrection, as it allows for fewer restraints, not to mention: "We won't be up against 'Big Bang Theory.'"

Jeff Winger and his pals are coming back, and Joel McHale, who plays the Community character, couldn't be happier.

McHale told The Hollywood Reporter that the show's fans will be pleased by Community's shift from NBC, where it has aired for the past five seasons, to Yahoo Screen. "I’m so excited because now there will be no commercial breaks, the restraints I'm assuming will be way less and it’s like this just playground now for [show creator] Dan [Harmon]." Added McHale: "Unencumbered Dan Harmon is very exciting."

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The actor said that Yahoo Screen execs "really believe in the show" and have the marketing muscle required to spread the word about the show's new home. He doesn't have trepidation about airing new episodes on an unproven original-content provider, given how much success Netflix has had with its original programming. "I think Community fans have proven that they will find the show," he said. 

Sony Pictures Television has committed to 13 new episodes of the series, launching this fall, although McHale said that more episodes could get made "if [the first batch] goes well." The entire cast will appear in all 13 episodes, and as far as the contracts are concerned, McHale said he won't be making less money from Sony per episode than he was from NBCUniversal. "I really like money, so it works out great," McHale joked. 

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According to McHale, all of his co-stars are looking forward to bringing the show back. "I know the cast is excited because it’s a whole new frontier, and we wont be up against Big Bang Theory, and we know Yahoo’s really excited to get us out there, and that is incredibly helpful when the people who are paying for you to make it are excited about it," he added. 

Now that Community fans are getting their sixth season, what about that movie? "People are already talking about" the possibility of streaming the much-hoped-for film on Yahoo Screen, McHale said. He added that Harmon and executive producer Chris McKenna plan to make the movie "epic" and not just "like an episode," although McHale doesn't think that anyone has started working on the film's script yet.

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Still, McHale doesn't seem to hold a grudge against NBC for canceling the show. "It wouldn’t be Community if there wasn’t some sort of big drama at the end of every year," he said. 

Email: Ryan.Gajewski@pgmedia.org
Twitter: @_RyanGajewski

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