Apple TV+ “Hello Tomorrow!” starring Billy Crudup dismantles the consumerism of the American Dream

In Hello morning! On Apple TV+, Billy Crudup’s character Jack sells a dream of a better life with a fresh start in a lunar mansion on the moon.

While most people would at some point love an opportunity to escape their problems on Earth, Jack is able to convince clients that he is the one who can offer them that happiness, relief, and dream life no matter what.

Hello morning! set in a 1950s retro-future world, think something like The Jetsons. Jack is a traveling salesman who leads a team selling timeshares for the BrightSide Lunar Residences. His team includes Shirley (Haneefah Wood), who is very much Jack’s hard-working colleague, the only one keeping the wheels of the business turning day in and day out, but she’s also cheating on her husband with her colleague Eddie. Hank Azaria plays Eddie, an obsessed gambler desperate to make his money back through sales. There’s also Herb, played by Canadian actor Dewshane Williams, who is ultimately there to work hard and get the job done, learning everything he can from his mentor, Jack.

Jack has an interesting personal history throughout the series. As more pieces of the puzzle about his business are revealed, Jack also unexpectedly reconnects with his son, whom he hasn’t seen in 20 years. But there’s a problem: His son Joey (Nicholas Podany) has no idea that Jack is actually his father and ends up taking a job on his sales team.

Episode 1. Billy Crudup in

Episode 1. Billy Crudup in Hello Tomorrow!, premiered February 17, 2023 on Apple TV+.

“I’ve seen my father go through that kind of life”

For Crudup, the actor was able to draw on his own father’s way of life for the role.

“I feel protected by this kind of disorganized fantastic life lived both materially by buying and selling things that you hope will bring some relief to people and the banality of their lives and that feeling of itself as futile,” Crudup said. “I’ve seen my dad go through that kind of life, and for me, I felt protected when that kind of person was pushed aside as one thing or another, … as a scammer, as a hustler and a gambler and a crook and a swindler and a fake.”

Crudup emphasized that, much like Jack, his father was “optimistic at every turn.”

“You could get him out of jail, and he’d be like, ‘That never happened, don’t worry, it’ll be fine,'” Crudup said. “That positivity, I think, was to hide this anguish he was in, that he didn’t know who he was in the world.”

“That gave me great empathy for him. [My dad] died in 2005 i couldn’t share it with him but i hurt him while i played the role. That as an adult, living up to your expectations is one thing, but living up to the expectations your children have of you as these mythological figures can be a lifelong task.”

Billy Crudup and Nicholas Podany are there

Billy Crudup and Nicholas Podany in Hello Tomorrow!, premiering February 17, 2023 on Apple TV+.

“We can’t all win the lottery”

As you might expect, all is not what it seems Hello morning! Creator Amit Bhalla and Lucas Jansen challenge the audience to really question this notion of the “American dream” and the consequences that can result from this kind of pursuit.

“I think Amit and Lucas challenge viewers to understand and appreciate the breadth of humanity and the ways that America, and the American Dream in particular, can shape the psyches of people who feel they are living up to their potential having to do that is beyond anyone’s ability,” Crudup said. “We can’t all win the lottery, and yet somewhere there’s this feeling that if you don’t win the lottery, if you don’t invent the pet stone, that you are, actually worthless and a failure.”

One thing that doesn’t waver Hello morning!Brilliantly executed by Crudup, Jack’s unwavering commitment to selling a dream is that dreams can come true.

“I think to Jack’s mindset, what’s the alternative?” said Crudup. “He will fight tooth and nail to hold on to his sense of truth.”

“Facts are irrelevant. I mean, we’ve seen a lot of people in the popular mind who don’t care about facts. The truth, the sense of reality, the hope for humanity resides in the belief system. If you say it often enough, if you tell yourself that you run harder than anyone when you grind it out, then maybe one day the truth that’s in your head, maybe a fantasy in your head, will become reality, because better or worse.”

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 15: Haneefah Wood, Amit Bhalla, Billy Crudup and Lucas Jansen visit Apple TV+'s

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – FEBRUARY 15: Haneefah Wood, Amit Bhalla, Billy Crudup and Lucas Jansen attend Apple TV+’s “Hello Tomorrow” New York Premiere at the Whitby Hotel on February 15, 2023 in New York City. (Photo by Joy Malone/Getty Images)

What’s interesting about that Hello morning! is the way creators Bhalla and Jansen are able to detect a certain level of imperfection early on. In this world, there are floating cars, people wearing jetpacks to work, and there’s a popcorn container that pops the kernels in your hand. It might seem “perfect,” but in the opening moments, a hovering delivery truck with an animated bird delivering packages goes haywire, killing a woman. It’s an enticing way the creators met the concepts of a hopeful dream world with the harshness of reality.

Hello morning! basically came out of a sort of mid-century American corporate advert for new dishwashers and better cleaning products and white picket fences,” Bhalla explained. “This is a show about dreamers, we’re going to put them in a dream… and suddenly it has to correspond to reality.”

“That meant the robots actually didn’t work that well. … Even a small mistake in a machine can lead to massive human consequences, and that seems like a powerful image to start the show. Also, because of the conversations about self-driving cars, because of the conversations about delivery and consumption, we felt like the audience could say, oh boy, this show actually talks a little bit about all the things that we’re dealing with today.”

Episode 1. Dewshane Williams, Hank Azaria and Haneefah Wood join us

Episode 1. Dewshane Williams, Hank Azaria and Haneefah Wood in Hello Tomorrow!, premiering February 17, 2023 on Apple TV+.

Hank Azaria, Haneefah Wood and Dewshane Williams round out the dream

While Crudup gives a compelling performance as Jack, the supporting cast are for Hello morning! really help build different dimensions of this quest for the American dream.

When it comes to character development, Hank Azaria is a documented legend, both for his roles in front of the camera and for the series Brockmireand voice roles in animated projects like The simpsons. For hello morning!, The actor worked to lean into the character’s cynicism, coupled with the series’ dialogue and jargon.

“It was a boys and dolls… Kind of language, so it’s not so much about the character as it’s about the mechanics of how I make that sound like a human saying it,” Azaria said.

“It was a character thing for me to get in touch with this real, cynical, negative Mets fan site that I could relate to Eddie. Not to mention that he’s addicted. He’s a compulsive, obsessive person. I definitely agree with that.”

For Haneefah Wood, Shirley is the only woman on the team, and the actor praised how the character is fully realized and dynamic, like the men.

“I think it was a very different concept that I hadn’t seen on TV before, especially now,” Wood said of what interested him Hello morning! “I think my character is so complex and the fact that she had this extramarital affair really made me want to play the role because I feel like it’s special.”

“We don’t really talk about the women doing these things … and I felt it was necessary. The words and the style of writing are also impeccable for me.”

It’s this type of character building that’s also very appealing to Dewshane Williams, while believing in her home on Apple TV+.

“I could tell the creators had thought about character building,” Williams said. “I love it because for me as an actor it’s a challenge to explore the depths of the human condition.”

“On the other hand, Apple has established itself as a player that only exudes quality. Going back to one of Steve Jobs’ success mantras was “don’t sell crap,” and I feel like the Apple TV+ has been able to create content, shows, and movies that actually mean something. They’re trying to create quality and that’s why I knew if I had the opportunity to work on a show like this I would be in the best position to do my job.”


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