Sarah Cooper: Everything's Fine

Sarah Cooper: Everything's Fine
Sarah Cooper Everything's Fine.jpg
Created by
Written by
Directed by Natasha Lyonne
Starring Sarah Cooper
Country of origin United States
Production
Executive producers
Cinematography Polly Morgan
Running time 49 minutes
Distributor Netflix
Release
Original release October 27, 2020 (2020-10-27)

Sarah Cooper: Everything's Fine is an American comedy special starring comedian Sarah Cooper with a series of sketch comedies featuring guest appearances from various celebrities. Netflix released the special on October 27, 2020. The special was created by Cooper, Maya Rudolph, and Natasha Lyonne, and was directed by Lyonne.

Synopsis

Sarah Cooper portrays a fictionalized version of herself, hosting the morning show Everything's Fine. Fred Armisen plays "Scooter", Cooper's producer, who wears strange outfits meant to serve as personal protective equipment.[1][2] Maya Rudolph plays the meteorologist.[3]

Cooper conducts interviews of Megan Thee Stallion, who portrays herself, and Ben Stiller, who portrays "8008s", a robot who is the chief executive officer of a tech company.[2] Jon Hamm portrays a satirized version of Mike Lindell, the Trump-supporting founder of My Pillow.[4] Aubrey Plaza plays a host of a QVC-like home shopping network that is part of the QAnon conspiracy theory.[3][5] Jane Lynch plays a baker who is a guest on the show, who turns out to be a "Karen", calling the police on Cooper.[6] Whoopi Goldberg provides narration for a pseudodocumentary on the history of "Karens".[1]

The special also has Cooper lip synching public statements made by Donald Trump, Ivanka Trump, Melania Trump, and Kellyanne Conway.[6] They also recreate the Donald Trump Access Hollywood tape, with Cooper lip synching Trump, Helen Mirren playing the role of Billy Bush, and Jonathan Van Ness portraying Arianne Zucker.[7] Others who appeared in the special include Connie Chung, Winona Ryder, Marisa Tomei, Danielle Brooks, Tommy Davidson, Jordan Black, Marcella Arguello, and Eddie Pepitone.[8] Tom Kane provided narration for the special.[9]

Background

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Cooper was a stand-up comedian who hosted and performed at open mic nights. When the pandemic required comedy clubs to close, she began making videos and posting them to TikTok, hoping they would become viral. After President Trump began hosting briefings on the pandemic, Cooper started making videos in which she lip synched Trump's words.[10] Cooper went viral with the video titled "How to Medical", a 50-second video in which she lip synched Trump's suggestion of injecting ultraviolet light or disinfectants to fight COVID-19 infection during a coronavirus task force meeting, on April 23, 2020.[11] She signed with William Morris Endeavor in June.[12] 

Development

In June 2020, Cooper began speaking with Rudolph and Natasha Lyonne, who founded a production company, Animal Pictures, with Danielle Renfrew Behrens. They developed a comedy special, which became the first project to be greenlit by Animal Pictures.[13] Cooper had the idea of basing the special on a morning show where the host "ends up under the desk" having a mental breakdown due to being overwhelmed by the negativity in the news.[14] She cited Mr. Show with Bob and David as an influence, as she wanted the segments to relate to each other.[3] Lyonne likened the "societal paranoia" conveyed by the special to Network and A Face in the Crowd.[4]

Sarah Cooper performing stand-up comedy

Netflix picked up the special in August, with Lyonne set to direct, and Cooper and Paula Pell serving as executive producers.[15] The special was written by Cooper, Pell, Lyonne, Rudolph, Cole Escola, and Jake Fogelnest.[16] Polly Morgan served as the cinematographer.[4] They had no budget for music, so Rudolph and Armisen created their own music.[17] Production was a rush because of their desire to release the special before the 2020 United States presidential election, which was to take place on November 3.[18]

It took two months from the initial meeting between Cooper, Lyonne, and Rudolph, to the beginning of filming. The special was filmed in five days[18] in Los Angeles.[19] Filming included COVID-19 safety protocols, including daily COVID-19 testing, wearing masks, and 15 minute ventilation breaks for every two hours on set.[20] Though the ventilation breaks were supposed to be taken outdoors, some of them had to be taken indoors due to the poor air quality resulting from the August 2020 California lightning wildfires.[18] The special has a run time of 49 minutes, and was released on October 27.[21]

Reception

The New York Times called Sarah Cooper: Everything's Fine "a celebrity-rich, intermittently funny sketch show that hangs on a narrative of apocalyptic doom."[1] Variety wrote that it was a "non-stop parade of celebrity cameos and leftover Saturday Night Live sketches that often feel too long."[2]

The film review website Metacritic surveyed 11 critics and assessed eight reviews as positive, two as negative, and one as mixed. It gave an aggregate score of 71 out of 100, which it said indicated "generally favorable reviews".[22] The similar website Rotten Tomatoes surveyed 19 critics and, categorizing the reviews as positive or negative, assessed 12 as positive and seven as negative. Of the 19 reviews, it determined an average rating of 6.3 out of 10. It gave the film a score of 63% and summarized the critical consensus, "Sarah Cooper's comedic charisma is as charming on screen as it was on social media, but a lack of thematic cohesion and an uneven ratio of successful skits make her first special merely Fine."[23]

The Associated Press named Cooper one of its Breakout Performers of 2020.[24]

References

  1. ^ a b c Zinoman, Jason (October 27, 2020). "What Happens When Sarah Cooper Speaks in Her Own Voice?". The New York Times. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ a b c Ray-Harris, Ashley (October 27, 2020). "Sarah Cooper's 'Everything's Fine' Is a 2020 Time Capsule, but not Much More: TV Review". Variety. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ a b c "How 'Sarah Cooper: Everything's Fine' Landed Those Wild Celebrity Cameos". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ a b c "How Sarah Cooper, Maya Rudolph, and Natasha Lyonne pulled off wild new special 'Everything's Fine'". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^ Li, Shirley (October 28, 2020). "Sarah Cooper's Humor Is Not What You Thought". The Atlantic. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. ^ a b Roeper, Richard (October 27, 2020). "'Sarah Cooper: Everything's Fine': Trump lip-sync artist works well with others". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^ Desta, Yohana. "Sarah Cooper, Helen Mirren Mock Trump Access Hollywood Tape in Netflix Special". Vanity Fair. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^ "Sarah Cooper's Netflix Special: All the Guest Stars and Who They Play". The Wrap. October 27, 2020. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  9. ^ Daniels, Karu F. "Following stroke, 'Star Wars' voice actor Tom Kane loses speaking ability". New York Daily News. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  10. ^ Nordstrom, Leigh (October 27, 2020). "Sarah Cooper, In Her Own Words". Women's Wear Daily. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  11. ^ Marks, Andrea (October 27, 2020). "'I Have to Pinch Myself': Sarah Cooper's Rapid Rise From Trump TikToker to Netflix Star". Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  12. ^ "TikTok Trump Impersonator Becomes Hollywood Commodity: "It's Been Insane"". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  13. ^ Myers, Amanda Lee. "Sarah Cooper's lip-syncing journey from TikTok to Netflix". The Daily Progress. Associated Press. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  14. ^ "TikTok Trump Impersonator Sarah Cooper Lands Netflix Comedy Special". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  15. ^ Aurthur, Kate (August 12, 2020). "Trump Lip-Syncher Sarah Cooper Sets Netflix Special Directed by Natasha Lyonne". Variety. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  16. ^ Berkowitz, Joe (October 27, 2020). "Sarah Cooper's Netflix special is an October surprise—for Trump". Fast Company. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  17. ^ "Natasha Lyonne on Highlighting the "Chaos and Horror" of 2020 in Sarah Cooper's Netflix Special". InStyle. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  18. ^ a b c Jackson, Angelique (October 27, 2020). "Natasha Lyonne and Maya Rudolph on Teaming Up for Animal Pictures and Helen Mirren's Cameo in 'Sarah Cooper: Everything's Fine'". Variety. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  19. ^ "TikTok Breakout Star Sarah Cooper on the Inspiration for Her 'Cinematic' Netflix Comedy Special". People. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  20. ^ "Sarah Cooper's Trump Lip-Syncs Turned Into a Career Catapult". Ad Week. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  21. ^ "Sarah Cooper's Netflix special is a 2020 mood: dark". Los Angeles Times. October 27, 2020. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  22. ^ "Sarah Cooper: Everything's Fine Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved December 14, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  23. ^ "Sarah Cooper: Everything's Fine". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved December 14, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  24. ^ "AP Breakthrough Entertainer Sarah Cooper: TikTok to Netflix". ABC News. Associated Press. Retrieved January 1, 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

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