Monday, January 25, 2021

‘Popstar’ Cashes in on the Hip Hop Experience

Andy Samberg as Conner4Real and admiring fan in 'Popstar.'
Andy Samberg as Conner4Real and admiring fan in ‘Popstar.’

*Hip Hop continues to be a mainstay in the U.S. culture, whether it’s music, film, TV or ads. In the latest inclusion, singer/rapper Conner4Real (Andy Samberg) faces a popularity crisis in “Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping.” Conner4Real started out with the Hip Hop band Style Boyz and became the group’s breakout success story.

After leaving the group, Conner hits rock bottom when his sophomore album flops. In the interim there has been bad blood between Conner and one band member in particular. As we watch that relationship disintegrate, a lot is said about friendship.

With that in mind, I asked Samberg, co-stars Akiva Schaffer and Jorma Taccone, collectively known as The Lonely Island in real life, what’s the key to a good and lasting friendship?

JORMA TACCONE: We’re gonna let Kiv handle this one.

AKIVA SCHAFFER: Honesty, Communication. [In unison with the other two] Keep it interesting in the bedroom.

ANDY SAMBERG: Put on a wig, put on a little teddy.

JT: Whatever works.

AK: So to speak.

What did you just say under your breath, Jorma?

 JT: [Laughs] And safe words are very important.

(L-R) Andy Samberg, Jorma Taccone, and Akiva Schaffer at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in NYC. (MMoore Photo)
(L-R) Andy Samberg, Jorma Taccone, and Akiva Schaffer at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in NYC. (MMoore Photo)

Why did social media also play a part in this picture?

AS: The thing that was at the forefront of what we felt was fun to play around with here was how much social media, the media and the number of outlets that exist nowadays has changed the landscape.

It goes from what is expected of an artist, what they give up of their personal lives to how real that is. This sort of relationship that musicians in the pop world have with their fans now and how genuine—or for the sake of their career—that is, and how that affects their relationships and their lives.

Also starring in the film are Tim Meadows, Maya Rudolph, Sarah Silverman, Chris Redd, Edgar Blackmon, James Buckley, and Joan Cusak. The many, many cameos listed go from Will Arnett to Jay Z.

Syndicated Entertainment journalist Marie Moore reports on film and TV from her New York City base. Contact her at [email protected]      Twitter: @thefilmstrip


Marie Moore
Veteran syndicated journalist who covers film and television.



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