What is it about the secret life of American teens that intrigues producer-writer-director Josh Schwartz? “Everything at that age feels like life and death,” he says. “And you never get your heart broken like you do as a teenager.”
In his big-screen directing debut, “Fun Size” (opening Friday), Wren (Victoria Justice) has to track down her oddball little brother when she really just wants to go to the huge Halloween bash thrown by a guy she’s crushing on.
Schwartz also filled us in on the last moments of his show “Gossip Girl” and gave us scoop on his new series “The Carrie Diaries,” the “Sex and the City” prequel show based on the books by Candace Bushnell with AnnaSophia Robb as the new Carrie Bradshaw.
1 What should we know about “Fun Size”?
It has universal appeal because at one point everybody was a teenager. It doesn’t matter if you were a rich kid, poor kid or middle-class kid. I wanted “Fun Size” to show that what everybody is going through is timeless. Who didn’t have a sibling where all you wanted was for that sibling to get lost? When she loses her little brother, she realizes how important her family is to her.
2 What did you like about Victoria Justice?
I think she was excited with this script because it was a little edgier and more adult than what she has done before in her career. She has a lot of young fans from her show “Victorious.” I think she still embodies a lot of characteristics that made her a role model. She’s still sensitive and caring, but in a PG-13 movie.
3 Are you upset that “Gossip Girl” show is ending?
Everything has to come to an end. We ended [my earlier shows] “The O.C.” and “Chuck.” I’ve gotten used to having these voids after the shows leave. Everything good comes to an end. Shows aren’t designed to stay on the air forever. All I can tell you is the finale is immensely satisfying. Any question you’ve ever had about “Gossip Girl” will be answered. Even if you haven’t watched the show in years, you should come back.
4 What can you tell us about “The Carrie Diaries?”
The show comes on in January, and it’s the prequel set in Connecticut. Amy Harris, who wrote the pilot, was a writer on “SATC.” This show is its own show. Anna is so good, and those are big Manolos to fill. She embodies a teenage version of Carrie.
5 Will we also see Samantha, Miranda and Charlotte?
That remains to be seen. We looked at it in the same way “Smallville” was able to fill in some of the origins of the Superman story. Carrie is really the female Superman. She is as important to women as Superman is to men.