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25 years after ‘Home Alone,’ Macaulay Culkin parodies his famous role in Uber-inspired webseries
You’d expect Kevin to be a little messed up, right?
You call for a car, and Macaulay Culkin picks you up in a red Honda, makes you do all the driving, and chain smokes while he recounts the time his family left him all alone at his house during Christmas time, stalked by two burglars.
It’s not a fever dream, it’s the first episode of a new webseries called :DRYVRS.
Everyone has a tale of a crazy Uber or Lyft driver sharing way too much during the ride, but creator Jack Dishel decided to turn that experience into a YouTube series. He’s tapping some of his famous friends, like Rosanna Arquette and Culkin, to fill the role of driver in these short films. Culkin, whom Dishel has known for five years and with whom he’s previously worked on music videos and short films, was completely on board parodying his most iconic role from Home Alone in the series.
“I was like, ‘You’re gonna say no, and I know this is absolutely crazy, and no one in their right mind if they were you would say yes to this,’” said Dishel of how he explained the gag to Culkin. “There was zero reluctance. When I pitched him the idea, he just started giggling. Personally, I feel really honored he chose to break that seal with me. Obviously, everyone is constantly associating him with that. He’ll be 75 and people will be passing him on the street slapping their cheeks and yelling.”
Dishel views the premiere episode, “Just Me in the House by Myself,” as a dark comic epilogue to the Home Alone franchise.
“For me, I just thought it was hilarious to explore the idea of that guy, who under any kind of real world circumstances would be absolutely traumatized by his experience,” he said.
Each episode will live as a universe unto itself, but stay connected through the fictional company of :DRYVERS.
“I had this incredible hot streak of really bizarre conversations, like five in a row to the point where we couldn’t start recording until I sat everyone down and started explaining,” Dishel laughed of the series’ origins. “At some point I realized each of them was a little mini movie. They had a natural arc to them. An Uber ride or a short cab ride, they have a natural beginning, middle, and end.”
So far Dishel is writing each short to suit the actor friend he’s tapping for the project, with the stories being inspired by some actual encounters, but amplified for comedic value. The project is fully independent, with no backing or network behind him.
“This is all favors; it’s all stuck together with gum and tape,” he explained.
With no sponsors, Dishel knows he might have some challenges in keeping up momentum as he releases the series over the next year, but that’s not his primary concern with the series.
“I don’t know that we’ll be able to roll this out super smooth on an assembly line,” Dishel said. “I want people to watch it and I am definitely excited about the idea of it being popular, but I am much more excited about the idea of making it awesome.”
Image courtesy of Jack Dishel
A former YouTube reporter for the Daily Dot, Rae Votta has more than a decade of experience in the digital and entertainment industries. Her work has appeared on AOL, Huffington Post, Out Magazine, Logo, VH1, Current TV, Billboard, and NYMag. She joined Netflix in 2016.