More than a decade after breaking out in Superbad, Emma Stone and Jonah Hill star together in a new limited series that’s significantly less embedded in adolescence. Netflix’s Maniac casts Stone and Hill as participants in an experimental drug trial where they meet ... then they meet again and again and again and again across a series of multiple universes and scenarios. It’s a trip.
The first trailer for the series, directed by True Detective’s Cary Joji Fukunaga, opens with Annie Landsberg (Emma Stone) and Owen Milgrim (Jonah Hill) having separate conversations with Dr. James Mantleray (Justin Theroux) at the inception of the pharmaceutical study that he’s conducting with the help of Dr. Greta Mantleray (Sally Fields). Annie, looking to find purpose among a fixation on her broken familial relationships, and Owen, the fifth son of a wealthy family who’s searching for an answer to his disputed schizophrenia diagnosis, both meet as participants lured by the promise of a permanent cure.
Mantleray’s study seems to promise endless returns, as he confidently claims that “the mind can be solved.” As Annie and Owen enter a test chamber, things seemingly go haywire. From a family dinner table to a Game of Thrones-style fantasy world, they continue to cross paths in what Annie describes as “some multi-reality, brain-magic shit,” and it’s unclear what the results will be or if they’ll survive.
Created by writer Patrick Somerville (The Leftovers), Maniac premieres on Netflix on Sep. 15.