Judd Apatow is still upset about the abrupt cancellation of his cult TV series Freaks and Geeks, and his subsequent Hollywood success is just “revenge” for the TV bosses who pulled the plug on the show.
On Monday, the filmmaker was honored with the 2014 Icon Award by bosses of the Paley Center for Media in Los Angeles, a prize which recognizes individual creative achievements in television. During his acceptance speech, Apatow was eager to talk about Freaks and Geeks, the U.S. series he executive produced that was cancelled by bosses at America’s NBC network after just 12 episodes in 2000.
The show launched the careers of then-unknown actors James Franco, Seth Rogen and Jason Segel, and Apatow confesses he still harbors resentment towards the executives behind the cancellation.
He says, “Even to this day, I think I didn’t want to admit that Freaks and Geeks was cancelled. Everything I’ve done, in a way, is revenge for the people who cancelled Freaks and Geeks. It’s really demented, but it’s just like, ‘You were wrong about that person, and that person and that person. And that writer and that director.’ And I really should get over that.”
Apatow, who frequently works with the same cast and crew from Freaks and Geeks, has gone on to find success primarily in film, working on hits such as Knocked Up, Pineapple Express and Bridesmaids. He also serves as an executive producer on the Golden Globe-winning series Girls.