Community Movie: Plot, Cast, and Everything Else We Know

Community might just be the most unlikely television success story of the twenty-first century. The show was on the brink of cancelation for its entire run, yet managed to stay on the air for six seasons, even managing to keep going after its creator, Dan Harmon, was fired and rehired between the beginning and end of season four. Outside that Dan Harmon-less fourth season, Community even continued to be good despite cast changes and a move to the completely forgotten Yahoo Screen for its final year.

There are over a hundred episodes of Community, which is the traditional threshold for a successful sitcom. However, none of this would have been possible if not for the show’s die-hard fans, who took a throw-away joke about The Cape and made it into a slogan: six seasons and a movie.

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The fact that we got six seasons of the meta-comedy was enough for most, but there was always a latent desire to complete the last part of that unintentional prophecy. The cast and writers behind the show have been promising a movie for a while, but nothing came off it until last week when Peacock announced that it would finally be happening. The film’s release is still a long way off, but considering Community’s persistent precarity, a confirmation that a movie is happening at all is plenty for now.

In the meantime, here’s everything we know about the highly anticipated project.

Community: The Plot

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So far, nothing has been revealed about the film’s potential story, which will be written by Dan Harmon and Andrew Guest, according to Deadline. When we last saw the Save Greendale Committee, formerly known as the study group, they were trying to figure out what the next “season” of their lives might look like, but all of them seemed pretty unlikely to be what would happen in the movie. At the end of the series finale, both Abed and Annie, the youngest members of the group, leave Greendale to move on with their lives, so something will need to happen that brings them back into the fold.

A fan-favorite idea for the plot of the movie would feature the study group rescuing Troy Barnes and LeVar Burton from pirates in the Gulf of Mexico. When Donald Glover departed Community to work on Atlanta, which is currently airing its final season, the in-universe explanation was that he left to circumnavigate the globe on a boat with LeVar Burton to receive his inheritance from the recently deceased Pierce Hawthorne.

In a later episode, observant viewers noticed that an on-screen news ticker mentioned Troy and Burton’s kidnappings by pirates, and no updates about his whereabouts have been given since. However, this would require Donald Glover to be a part of the movie, which would be a difficult undertaking considering his busy schedule.

Community: The Cast

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Beyond the announcement that the movie is indeed happening, we also got some news about the cast for the film. Thankfully, at least all the cast that stayed on the show over its six seasons are returning. Joel McHale will return as the former lawyer Jeff Winger along with Gillian Jacobs as Britta Perry, Danny Pudi as Abed Nadir, Alison Brie as Annie Edison, Ken Jeong as Ben Chang, and the Oscar-winning screenwriter Jim Rash as Craig Pelton. It wouldn’t be a Community movie without at least these actors, but there are some still noticeable omissions.

Unsurprisingly, Chevy Chase is not coming back to play Pierce Hawthorne, but the lack of Yvette Nicole Brown and Donald Glover’s names on the list is disappointing. Glover rocketed to fame after leaving the show, so his absence seemed all but inevitable, but Brown has already made cameos on the show since her departure. Deadline reports that neither of them will return, but maybe they will come back, albeit in a smaller capacity.

Additionally, three late-comers to the show, Jonathan Banks as Professor Buzz Hickey, Keith David as Elroy Patashnik, and Paget Brewster as Francesca “Frankie” Dart, are also missing. Hopefully, some of the show’s many guest stars, like John Goodman, Jack Black, and LeVar Burton, will at least make a brief appearance.

Release Date

Sony Pictures Television

While there is no official release date as of now, it will presumably be released next year if all goes to plan (which is rarely the case for Community). It is miraculous that this weird show has thrived this long, but this movie is just icing on the cake. We already have six great seasons of television to rewatch endlessly. Still, at the same time, any chance to spend more time with the students and faculty at Greendale is something we should be thankful for whenever it arrives.