The To Do List, the upcoming movie starring Aubrey Plaza, is about a teenage girl who gets herself into a lot of awkward sexual situations in a quest to attain a hunky guy. But don't call it a romantic comedy, writer-director Maggie Carey told The Atlantic Wire in a phone conversation. That's what some people tried to label it, she explained, simply because it had a female in the lead.
"This not a romantic comedy. It's a comedy comedy. I think sometimes because it was a female protagonist, people automatically assumed it was a romantic comedy," Carey explained, saying this popped up during the financing and marketing side of making the movie. "For some reason that really irked me and not because I don't love romantic comedies, but because it was like no, this movie is just funny, and the whole point of the protagonist's journey its that for her it’s okay that the first time is not about being in love, it's just about being a curious teenager."
But The To Do List is certainly not about finding romance, unlike say Austenland, a movie due out in August, that's being almost exclusively marketed to women. Carey's movie instead follows the sexual misadventures of type-A high school graduate Brandy Klark (Plaza) in the summer of 1993. Klark—a Hillary Clinton-worshipping feminist—decides that, before heading to college at Georgetown, she needs to educate herself about sex. Accordingly, she decides to make a meticulous to-do list of all the acts she needs to perform—hand job, blow job, etc.—leading up to actual sex with the smoldering, guitar-playing Rusty Waters (Scott Porter). Marriage is never in this equation. "Good god, she would never marry this guy and she knows that," Carey said.