Canadian DJ Mausner highlights ‘messy’, ‘raunchy’ and ‘weird’ parts of the teenage years

Award-winning Canadian comedian DJ Mausner has taken us back to high school with the new film Prom dates (on Disney+ in Canada). Directed by Kim O. Nguyen (Never have I ever), starring Ginny & Georgia‘s Antonia Gentry, and Julia Lester from High School Musical: The Musical: The Series, the teen comedy is the first feature Mausner ever wrote.

“My thought was, what do I know the most about so that I can write from that perspective and the experience can be true. I’m fortunate to have some long-lasting, wonderful friendships in my life, my two best childhood friends,” Mausner explained Yahoo Canada. “I wanted to make use of our experiences.”

“I think there was a thought behind it, or at least for a while, that a feminist film made young ladies run wild. And my thought behind it was, no. My friends and I were a threat to society. Yes, I was too.” on student council, but we also told our parents that we were having a sleepover and then sneaking out and storming someone’s house, or jumping over a fence in a denim mini dress and ripping my leg open, all that stupid stuff. And I wanted to delve into that teenage girl experience that is messy and raunchy and weird.


Watch Prom Dates on Disney+ with plans starting at $7.99/month

$8 at Disney+

Best friends Jess (Gentry) and Hannah (Lester) made a prom pact at the age of 13, a blood oath, to have the best prom dates. Now in their senior year of high school, the teens are determined to keep their end of the bargain.

But just before prom, Jess finds out that her boyfriend is cheating on her, while Hannah is dating Greg (Kenny Ridwan), but she is actually in love with her classmate Angie (Terry Hu), and has not come out as a lesbian . yet.

The clock is ticking, and Jess and Hannah only have one night of chaos to find the ultimate prom dates.

Antonia Gentry and Julia Lester in Prom Dates on Disney+ in Canada, Hulu in the US (Disney+)Antonia Gentry and Julia Lester in Prom Dates on Disney+ in Canada, Hulu in the US (Disney+)

Antonia Gentry and Julia Lester in Prom Dates on Disney+ in Canada, Hulu in the US (Disney+)

Much of the story actually relies on the friendship between Jess and Hannah, with Mausner ensuring they have a specific ‘shorthand’.

“My two friends are like two stunningly beautiful women who dress incredibly well, and when we’re together we say, ‘Do you want to rip some ass?’ We say stupid, crazy things to each other,” Mausner emphasizes. “I wanted there to be some of the insular language that is so common in female friendships.”

“I wanted these people to sound real. There’s nothing worse than tuning into a TV show where someone writes, ‘Hashtag unbelievable, I’m OMG-ing over the sloppy joes in the cafeteria today.’ I didn’t want it to feel like they were speaking from another time.”


Watch Prom Dates on Disney+ with plans starting at $7.99/month

$8 at Disney+

But as he works to make this friendship a reality, Mausner also pushes the comedic boundary into more outrageous elements. A character we meet when Jess is trying to get a date to the prom speaks only Italian, and unbeknownst to Jess, he is talking about her as a human sacrifice.

“I wanted to delve into the surreal a little bit,” Mausner said. “I don’t think I’m reinventing the wheel, I just want a fun movie that people will enjoy, but there were elements I wanted to step up a bit more, like Harold & Kumar style.”

“I wanted to caricature real moments that teenage girls have and it’s definitely a real moment as a teenage girl, when you meet a guy at a party and you think, ‘This could be a crush and the love of my life, otherwise he would could kill me.’ …So I wanted to play with that and also dance on the edge of that, to where Jess finally says, ‘I thought he was going to kill me or we have incredible chemistry, so I wanted to find out.’ And like Hannah, I wanted her to basically have an abbreviated version of a coming out story. Kissing a girl for the first time, dating a girl, that kind of thing.