Saturday, 7/6/2019

Witty and Profound

An Interview with LATE NIGHT Director Nisha Ganatra

Katherine has been hosting her own talk show for years; it's hard to imagine television without her. That's what she thought, too. It comes as all the more of a shock to her when she learns one day that she's to be forced out of her own talk show and replaced by a younger man. Katherine won't take that lying down, of course, and pins most of her hopes on her new writer, Molly. The world outside has changed quite a bit, after all, and is there even room in this fast-paced business for a woman who's over 50?

Ageism, the treatment of minorities, and the conditions women encounter in show business: LATE NIGHT includes numerous themes that are on people's minds. A dream team comprised of director Nisha Ganatra, lead actress Emma Thompson, and scriptwriter/actress Mindy Kaling has added a dose of pointed humor to convey these topics in one of the year's most entertaining films.

To find out more about our closing film, we recommend attending the FILMMAKERS LIVE! LATE NIGHT discussion, where producer Jillian Apfelbaum will take questions from the audience. We asked director Nisha Ganatra in advance about her film and the subjects it raises.

When did you get involved in LATE NIGHT?

Mindy and I met after she finished the script and I really connected to the material.

What did you find appealing in the story?

The story was very funny and also took on big themes that I care so much about. Feminism, ageism, diversity, inclusion, and sexism in the workplace — all big themes that are hidden under a workplace comedy.

In your opinion what is the purpose of comedy?

It is essential for living. Comedians are the truth tellers of our society. They will often take on the taboo or the political and dare to say things no one else will say. That is why I have so much respect and love for comedians.

What makes you laugh personally?

Funny people. A joke well delivered, a funny story, physical comedy well executed.

Do you have any role models both in the field of comedy as well as general?

Too many to name: Gilda Radner, Laverne and Shirley, Amy Poehler, Tina Fey, Karen Kilgarrif, Maya Rudolph, Tifanny Haddish, Jennifer Saunders, Joanna Lumley, Dawn French…

Has the situation changed since you started?

The statistics are still so heart breaking – women are still facing a lot of discrimination in this industry. But it is changing and I have a lot of hope that people will do the right thing.