The University held a preview screening on April 12 of the pilot episode for a new HBO comedy series entitled “Veep,” which stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus P’14. All 372 seats in the TimesCenter, an auditorium in New York City, were reserved for University alumni, faculty, and parents to see the preview hosted by Louis-Dreyfus.
“It should be great fun,” said President Michael Roth on the afternoon before. “Julia is a Wes parent, and it’s very nice of her to give us a preview of the new comedy series Veep. We have a few hundred Wesleyan faithful coming to see it, which is great.”
According to Associate Director of Events Meghan Fay, the planning for the screening began after Louis-Dreyfus indicated to University officials that she was interested in supporting the University by hosting an event. Plans for the event were finalized after several conversations between Louis-Dreyfus and the University Relations Office.
“Sometimes you choose these things and sometimes you just stand up when the opportunity presents itself,” said Director of Strategic Communications and Marketing Mark Bailey. “This seemed like the perfect opportunity for Wesleyan to share in Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ terrific news about this show.”
Information regarding the event and how to reserve a seat in the theater was first released on March 20 to members of the Donors Association who live in the New York Area. More invitations were sent to University alumni and parents living in the greater New York City area on March 26. Every seat in the theater was reserved only five hours after these invitations were sent out.
Louis-Dreyfus is known for her past work on “Saturday Night Live,” “Seinfeld,” and “The New Adventures of Old Christine.” “Veep” follows the comedic experiences of a fictional Vice President of the United States, who is played by Louis-Dreyfus. The series is set to premiere on Apr. 26.
“I haven’t seen anyone who’s taken a look at [Veep] who hasn’t laughed out loud within thirty seconds,” Bailey said. “You’ve got this half-hour comedy series about the least effectual job in the world’s most powerful office; it’s good stuff.”
Both Bailey and Fay were adamant that the screening was not intended to be a fundraiser, but rather a fun event for alumni. The University has previously hosted similar events, including a screening of “How I Met Your Mother,” hosted by series creators Carter Bays and Craig Thomas, both ’97.
According to Fay, these events provide opportunities for alumni to enjoy themselves and feel reconnected to the University.
“We want to show awareness about Wesleyan and its interesting people,” Fay said. “We have lots of people in different venues, [and] a great film connection with alumni and parents. We just want to make people feel good about Wesleyan again.”