The late George Carlin’s groundbreaking five decades in comedy get an in-depth documentary treatment in the new trailer from Judd Apatow and Michael Bonfiglio, George Carlin’s American Dream. The two-part doc is set to air May 20 on HBO Max.
The clip offers a condensed preview of the sprawling scope of the document. It touches on Carlin’s comedic influences and penchant for courting righteous controversy, as he did with his infamous “seven dirty words” routine. Next, it delves into Carlin’s personal life, specifically his close relationship with his mother, and how fame and drug addiction both upended that bond and derailed Carlin’s career.
The clip also shines a light on Carlin’s incredible talent for reinventing himself and, by extension, stand-up comedy. “George is still relevant,” says W. Kamau Bell. “He’s changed comedy three or four times, and he’s still talking to us.”
George Carlin’s American Dream will feature interviews with a range of Carlin peers and admirers, including Bell, Jerry Seinfeld, Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, Patton Oswalt, Bill Burr, Bette Midler and Chris Rock. It will also include contributions from Carlin’s daughter, Kathy, his manager Jerry Hamza, his second wife Sally Wade and his late brother, Patrick. Interviews will be intermixed with an array of archival materials, including numerous never-before-seen videos, photographs, audio recordings, letters and diary entries.