Bill O’Reilly has one thing correct: There is a war against Christmas. It’s not being waged by people who prefer the more inclusive “happy holidays,” though, but rather, by Hollywood, which is dividing and conquering families this yuletide by releasing way too many high-profile films on the same day. Add to the list that already includes Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight, the new adaptation of Moneyball author Michael Lewis’s The Big Short, which corrals the talents of pretty much every A-List male actor working now.
If the Ocean’s 11-style casting of Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling, Steve Carell, and Brad Pitt in this film about the build-up of the housing and credit bubble that resulted in the crash of 2008 isn’t enough to draw you in, consider who is at the helm of the project. As billed in the trailer, the film comes “[f]rom the outrageous mind of Adam McKay,” the director most known for collaborating on a plethora of Will Ferrell movies, including both Anchorman outings, and the wildly underrated The Other Guys. (Fun fact: McKay was also one of the founding members of the original Upright Citizens Brigade crew, along with Horatio Sanz.)
McKay has been pivoting toward broader horizons beyond comedy for a while now. (Even The Other Guys hinted at a direction like that of this film, with an underlying message against corporate greed and government tolerance.) This past year, he wrote on Ant-Man, exercising his skills at satisfying audiences without leaning on those guaranteed Ferrell-based belly-laughs. This December, we’ll find out whether he’s able to pull off a film that has only a light dusting of comedic elements. Watch the first trailer below.