Ass-Kickers' Association is a 2002 American coming-of-age comedy-drama film written and directed by Leopold McGough and starring Patrick Seymour, Justin Seymour, Laurel Cassidy, Rebecca Lunsford, Carsten Stratton and Fiona Sams. The film centers around the attempts of a teenage boy to assemble a group of classmates that will help him rid his high school of bullying for the sake of his twin brother, whom he believes attempted suicide the year before as a result of the nonstop harassment he faced from his peers at school.
Praised for the performances of its young cast, the film also garnered critical acclaim for its exploration of teenage depression, sibling relationships and high school "clique mentality". Initially released on January 18, 2002 at the Stardance Film Festival, the film saw a limited release in the United States on August 16 of that year, and has since gained a cult following.
Ass-Kickers' Association is notable for several reasons: it is the film that launched the acting careers of Justin Seymour, Fiona Sams and Lara Zampano, and is the first film to take place in the Leoverse, the shared fictional universe created by Leopold McGough in which all his teen films are set.
It was announced in November 2006 that Ass-Kickers' Association would be adapted into a television series called All the Wrong Kids. The series ran from 2009 to 2014, receiving several accolades and garnering critical praise throughout the majority of its five-season run.
In 2010, a musical adaptation of Ass-Kickers' Association was announced as being in the works. The musical first premiered off-Widepath in March 2016, ending its run in June of that year. It later premiered its Widepath run in November 2016.
In November 2015, Leopold McGough announced that he was writing a sequel to the film called Ass-Kickers' Reunion, which will follow the six main characters when they meet again at their high school reunion twenty years after the events of the first movie. He has said that its release will "likely be in about 2022, if all goes according to plan".
- Patrick Seymour as Percy Chamberlain
- Justin Seymour as Finn Chamberlain
- Laurel Cassidy as Candace Summerfield
- Rebecca Lunsford as Anastasia Holmes
- Fiona Sams as Liesel Hofmeister
- Carsten Stratton as Nathaniel Ross
- Lara Zampano as Mia Maddox
- Jake Paltrow as Ian Freeman
- Jennifer Walmsley as Raven Cooke
Television adaptation Edit
In November 2006, Leopold McGough announced that Ass-Kickers' Association would be adapted into a television series. The series, named All the Wrong Kids for the well-known quote in the film ("I fell in love with all the wrong kids") premiered in 2009 and starred Robyn Brinkworth as Anastasia Holmes, Jason Cunningham as Nathaniel Ross, Roxanne Lambert as Candace Summerfield, Eric Martindale as Finn Chamberlain, Sam Martindale as Percy Chamberlain, and Jessica Sheffield as Liesel Hofmeister, with Emily Dubois, McGough described the series as "a modern adaption" and said that he hoped for "an ensemble kind of cast. I don't want the series to focus entirely and only on the twins. I don't want the other characters to be props."
During a press interview in 2008 for his film Trashcan Kids, McGough revealed that All the Wrong Kids would air the subsequent year, be run by Abigail Grimshaw and star "predominantly unknown teen actors". He said the cast was the element of the show he was most excited about because it "allow[ed] the actors to display their young talent while simultaneously keeping the show grounded", adding that "the series starts before the events of the movie, so it's like a prequel, but if it goes on long enough I'd love the show to run through the movie's timeline. The final scene of the show could be a re-enactment that final game of UNO, at the last A.K.A. meeting. I think that would be awesome."
The series ran from 2009 to 2014, receiving several accolades and garnering critical praise throughout the majority of its five-season run. Although the show did run through the timeline of Ass-Kickers' Association, the timeline of the show differs significantly from that of the original film.
In November 2015, Leopold McGough revealed that he was writing a sequel to Ass-Kickers' Association. Set twenty years after the events of the first film, McGough's sequel, "tentatively" titled Ass-Kickers' Reunion, will follow the main six characters when they reunite at a high school reunion. Rebecca Lunsford, Carsten Stratton and Justin Seymour have all expressed an interest in returning for a sequel. McGough also stated in an interview that his ideal vision for the film would include the main casts from both Ass-Kickers' Association and All the Wrong Kids.
When asked if she would come back for a sequel, actress Fiona Sams said that she has "often thought about being in a reunion film, and I definitely wouldn't say no, depending on the circumstances". Justin Seymour has also expressed an interest in returning to do a sequel, saying, "As long as it's got the heart of the first one, I'd be more than willing to return."
Musical adaptation Edit
A musical adaptation of Ass Kickers' Association was announced as being in the works in 2010 and ran off-Widepath from March to June 2016. It premiered its Widepath run in November 2016.