‘Hangover’ director’s un-aired HBO doc ‘Frat House’ surfaces

Todd Phillips is one of the most successful writer/director/producer’s in the adult-oriented comedy movie scene these days with huge box office winners to his name such as Old School, Road Trip and The Hangover films, but years before all the hits and fame he assembled with the help of fellow director Andrew Gurland a curious little documentary for HBO about the American college fraternity experience.

Frat House was the result and it has the dubious honour of being the only doc commissioned by HBO that never actually ended up going to air even after winning the Grand Jury Prize for Documentary at the 1998 Sundance film festival.

A controversy arose around the events depicted being so extreme that many people refused to believe they were not staged, even in spite of Phillips and Gurland’s assurances that everything that captured was completely real and that they often could not believe what they were witnessing themselves.

After passing into near myth and legend, the film has finally emerged online in its entirety and is well worth the 1 hours watch. It’s a really great and darkly entertaining piece that also has the added benefit now of providing insight into a lot of where Phillips’s later fictional works came from.