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About The Premise

B.J. Novak’s The Premise is a bold and provocative half-hour anthology of standalone stories about the times we live in. The curated collection of character-driven episodes challenges our shared morality tales, choosing art over argument, as it engages with the most relevant and meaningful issues of the modern era.

Created and hosted Novak, joined by an extraordinary group of actors and collaborators including Lucas Hedges, Kaitlyn Dever, Jon Bernthal, Ben Platt, Tracee Ellis Ross, Daniel Dae Kim, Lola Kirke, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Soko, Ed Asner, George Wallace, Jermaine Fowler, Ayo Edebiri, Boyd Holbrook, Eric Lange, Beau Bridges and more, the series grounds daring comedic premises with equally daring dramatic performances. Guns, identity, social justice, sex, capitalism, revenge, love, fame, social media, butt plugs – nothing is off limits. A high-wire combination of topics and talent, The Premise establishes a new tone for a new time – the age of the unprecedented, bringing the stories we text about privately into the open.

“Social Justice Sex Tape” (Airs September 16, 2021) – When a white, woke, twenty-something ally to social justice causes (Ben Platt) discovers video evidence of a disputed police incident in the background of his highly embarrassing sex tape, a savvy young lawyer (Ayo Edebiri) and her mentor (Tracee Ellis Ross) strategize on how to best use the tape and witness to save an innocent man (Jermaine Fowler) from prison. Also starring Melissa Saint-Amand. Written by B.J. Novak and Josie Duffy Rice. Directed by Kitao Sakurai.

“Moment of Silence” (Airs September 16, 2021) – After losing his daughter to gun violence, a grieving father (Jon Bernthal) pursues a new job as a PR director at the National Gun Lobby, where he’s befriended by a coworker (Boyd Holbrook) who starts to suspect the man’s motives may be far more dangerous than they seem. Also starring Beau Bridges and Amy Landecker. Written and directed by B.J. Novak.

“The Ballad of Jesse Wheeler” (Airs September 23, 2021) – A pop megastar (Lucas Hedges) returns to his high school to pledge a donation to build a new library, but instead promises to have sex with the school’s valedictorian as an academic achievement prize. The promise inspires the disillusioned Abbi (Kaitlyn Dever) along with the rest of the student body, while the star’s manager (O’Shea Jackson Jr.) and the school’s principal (George Wallace) desperately try to walk back the promise. Also starring Ed Asner, Brendan Scanell and Grace Song. Written and directed by B.J. Novak.

“The Commenter” (Airs September 30, 2021) – A young woman (Lola Kirke) with a happy life and loving partner (Soko) becomes obsessed with a critical anonymous comment online, eventually upending her life in a quest for the commenter’s approval. Also starring Sylvia Grace Crim and Benjamin Clement. Written by Jia Tolentino and B.J. Novak. Directed by Darya Zhuk.

“Butt Plug” (Airs October 07, 2021) – A once-poor child of immigrants (Daniel Dae Kim) who has now become one of the world’s richest men presents a chance at redemption to his former school bully (Eric Lange): an uninterrupted hour with his board of directors to pitch a very specific product. Also starring Bryan Batt. Written by B.J. Novak. Directed by Jake Schreier.

The Premise is executive produced by B.J. Novak and John Lesher; produced by FX Productions.

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