Pete Davidson has revealed his new movie, The King of Staten Island, is a “love letter to his mom.” The Saturday Night Live comedian stars in the Judd Apatow-directed film which is reportedly a fictionalized version of events that have occurred in his life. The film is a tale of love, loss, and healing for one family. The storyline hits home for the actor well-known for his offbeat observations about life on the late-night comedy sketch series.
“My character in the movie is probably about 75 percent me,” Pete revealed in a press release for the film. “Maybe more. I can’t really tell.”
The story tells the story of 24-year-old slacker Scott Carlin, who’s been unable to process the untimely death of his father that occurred when he was a young boy. Scott lives at home with his mother, Margie (Marisa Tomei), and his younger sister, Claire (Maude Apatow). He spends his days smoking marijuana with his pals, played by actors Ricky Velez, Moises Arias, and Lou Wilson. He dreams of becoming a tattoo artist. Scott’s life is turned upside down when his mother begins a romance with a local firefighter (Bill Burr), the first man she’s had a romantic relationship with since the death of Scott’s father.
Judd Apatow, the film’s screenwriter, and director — who took 90 pages of jokes and turned them into a screenplay –remarked that Pete’s story was relatable to anyone who has overcome difficulties in their life.
View this post on Instagram
#Repost @juddapatow: Five weeks till The King of Staten Island. I am really excited for everyone to see it. It feels odd putting out a film at this time, but I think what it has to say relates to what we are all experiencing and hopefully it is funny too. @thekingofstatenisland photo by @lloydbishop
“This isn’t a story about 9/11, but it is a story about a young man whose firefighter father died while fighting a fire,” said Judd in a press release describing the experience of working on the production. “In a lot of ways, it’s an imagining of what Pete’s life would have been if he didn’t find comedy and was still in Staten Island in his mid-20s, going nowhere.”
Judd revealed that the idea for the film came after Pete mentioned he wanted his mom to be in a relationship and to be happy. This turned into a storyline of what would happen if Scott’s mom started dating a fireman and how that revelation would ultimately affect the character.
Fans are familiar with Pete’s tongue-in-cheek characterizations on Saturday Night Live as well as his time in the media spotlight due to his romances with Ariana Grande, Kate Beckinsale, and Kaia Gerber. This film is a way for them to see the comedian in a unique light. Judd revealed that despite his offbeat persona, he finds Pete someone people are interested in and sympathetic to.
The comedian has been honest about his struggles with borderline personality disorder, Crohn’s Disease, and drug addiction. He was up-front about his health issues in a 2017 Weekend Update segment as seen above.
The film was originally intended to debut in theaters, but due to the coronavirus pandemic, it will head directly to streaming services beginning June 12.