Royal Oak Tribune

Sitcom about Michigan’s last Blockbuste­r has ‘so much heart’

- By Kurt Anthony Krug

“Fresh Off the Boat” star Randall Park wasn't sure if he wanted to do another sitcom.

In fact, he was very skeptical about the new workplace comedy “Blockbuste­r,” which is set in Michigan and occurs in the last remaining Blockbuste­r Video store. The show debuted on Netflix Thursday, Nov. 3.

“The idea of a show about Blockbuste­r felt like it might be leaning on the nostalgia thing a little too much. There were a lot of signs for me that this wasn't the right thing to jump to next,” said Park, 48, a two-time UCLA alumnus.

Then he read the script that was penned by the sitcom's creator Vanessa Ramos (“Superstore,” “Brooklyn Nine-Nine”).

“Vanessa did such a beautiful job of making it so much more than just this nostalgic brand,” said Park. “It really was a story about a family that worked together and the idea of keeping a business alive — there were just so many things that I felt were so relevant to today's times. It was also funny and had so much heart. It just felt like the right job to do… and I'm enjoying it.”

In “Blockbuste­r,” Timmy Yoon (Park) is the manager and owner of the last Blockbuste­r. The store is in danger of closing down, but Timmy and his team of employees are determined to prevent that. He's also attracted to co-worker Eliza (Melissa Fumero, “Brooklyn Nine-Nine”).

“I just hope people watch it and tune in. If they love it, spread the word. It's just really a fun show,” said Park. “I would just love to keep going and find out what happens because at the end of the season, we're not sure what'll happen — not just to the store but also this possible romance between Timmy and Eliza. I, personally, would love to find out. Hopefully, we'll get another season.”

While “Blockbuste­r” occurs in Michigan, it's filmed in Vancouver. Park has been to Michigan, however, and even appeared in the 2012 rom-com “The Five-Year Engagement,” parts of which were filmed in Detroit, Ann Arbor, and Ypsilanti.

“I love (Michigan)! I love it!” he said. “I spent a lot of time out there and just really, really loved it!”

Park is also known for playing FBI Agent Jimmy Woo in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. He debuted as Woo in 2018's “AntMan and the Wasp” and also appeared in 2021's “WandaVisio­n” mini-series on Disney+. He is set to reprise his role as Woo in 2023's “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumani­a.”

“It's amazing! I grew up collecting comic books and loved Marvel in particular. Just to be a part of it and playing a character who's actually in the comic books, it's such a trip to me,” he said. “When I first played Woo in ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp,' I thought it was a one-off. I didn't know I'd be coming back. The fact that this character resonated with audiences and also with (Marvel Studios president) Kevin Feige and the folks at Marvel… is such a great blessing to me. I'm just thrilled to be part of the MCU.”

 ?? PHOTO COURTESY OF NETFLIX ?? “Blockbuste­r” debuted on Netflix on Thursday, Nov. 3, and runs for 10 episodes.
PHOTO COURTESY OF NETFLIX “Blockbuste­r” debuted on Netflix on Thursday, Nov. 3, and runs for 10 episodes.

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