With one tuxedo, thousands of postcards, and a Winnebago, the nine men of the New York Citybased Broken Lizard comedy troupe took Puddle Cruiser, their 1997 Sundance entry, directly to its college-age audience. During a four-week tour of 20 northeastern colleges, nearly 4500 students attended screenings and generated attention for a movie that hasn’t yet been able to secure a distributor.
The filmmakers attracted audiences to Puddle Cruiser— a genial college comedy in the manner of Clerks or Caddyshack— by handing out postcards on campus. E-mail endorsements from fellow students at previous points on the tour and cheap tickets ($1) also helped. “It’s not about the money,” said Steve Lemme, a Broken Lizard member who plays Puddle Cruiser‘s lead. “It’s all about butts in seats.” By the end of the tour, the troupe had a green light to write a pilot for NBC. Still without a distributor for their first film, they’ll begin filming their next comedy, Super Troopers, in May and resume the Puddle Cruiser college tour in the fall.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on February 23, 1999