Hulu’s new sci-fi/comedy series “Future Man” has been described as a humorous cross between “The Last Starfighter” and “Terminator,” but executive producer Seth Rogen says it’s actually an amalgam of much more.
“It really is inspired by a lot of the science fiction movies that we grew up (with),” Rogen told a recent gathering of journalists in Beverly Hills, Calif. “Pretty much any science fiction movie from the last, like 35 years roughly, influenced the show. But more than anything, it’s like it’s kind of like a journey (of) a guy (going) from a janitor to potentially the savior of mankind and the story of two future warriors slowly humanizing in our world, which is a weird thing to say out loud.”
Indeed, the half-hour series, which begins streaming its entire 13-episode first season Tuesday, Nov. 14, stars Josh Hutcherson (the “Hunger Games” movies) as Josh Futturman, a young ne’er-do-well toiling at a menial janitor job while still living with his parents, Gabe (Ed Begley Jr., “St. Elsewhere”) and Diane (the late Glenne Headly, “The Night Of”). But if there is one thing this underachiever does well, it’s gaming, and his success at the previously-thought-unbeatable “Biotic Wars” brings him to the attention of two travelers from the future, Tiger (Eliza Coupe, “Happy Endings”) and Wolf (Derek Wilson, “Preacher”), who tell him the world is in peril and he is the only one with the skill-set capable of preventing the extinction of mankind.
He then sets off across time with his newfound partners to stop events and individuals in the past and future that will contribute to the world’s end in the 22nd century. As the characters traversed the decades, Rogen and fellow producers Ben Karlin, Ariel Shaffir and Kyle Hunter were tasked with re-creating the eras, including the 1960s.
“Cinematically it was fun to represent,” Rogen says. “… I was born in 1982, so it was far before my time but you know, ‘Easy Rider’ was like a big, kind of, visual inspiration for us for some of the ’60s stuff. I love movies from the ’60s. Obviously, all that strife creates good filmmaking at times. So it was a good time for independent filmmaking.
“But more than anything, it was a fun area to take the show, both visually and narratively,” he continues, “the music, the style of it, the different themes that are exactly the same themes that are happening now, basically, and have probably been happening forever and will continue to happen until the world ends.”