Here’s a fun fact to add to your fun fact about how Louis C.K., prior to becoming an Emmy Award-winning television director, helmed the 2001, Chris Rock-starring box office bomb Pootie Tang: that wasn’t his first movie. In fact, C.K.’s proper directorial debut was a 1998 black-and-white indie called Tomorrow Night, which played a handful of festivals back in the day. It’s mostly been regarded as an unseen curiosity since–a line on the comedian’s IMDb profile, and nothing more.
But now that Louis C.K. can do basically anything he wants, he’s decided that he wants the world to see Tomorrow Night. The film, which stars Chuck Sklar–whose credits include, like C.K., writing for The Chris Rock Show–also features before-they-were-famous appearances by Steve Carrell, Amy Poehler, and Wanda Sykes. And it looks really weird. The trailer is available on YouTube, and it is far stranger than you might be anticipating.
Tomorrow Night doesn’t necessarily look funny, or even, um, coherent. The imagery featured includes shots of a hand setting the needle down on a Victrola, a man sitting on a bowl of ice cream, close-ups of contorted faces, and other things that one might expect in, say, a parody of art films. (Classical music plays behind the whole thing, because naturally.) Based on the trailer alone, Tomorrow Night looks like the sort of project that someone in Louis C.K.’s position might want to stay buried.
But with every opportunity to bury it, he’s opted instead to release it himself, via his web site, which means that he thinks there’s something to it that people who know him from his work on Louie and his stand-up will want to see. It’s an intense-looking film, but C.K. has earned some trust. If he stands by Tomorrow Night, we’ll be there to give it a look.