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A week after they leave New York around March 28, the pair hurtles into the 15th season of , part of a new pact with Comedy Central that keeps the show on the air through 2013 and is said to be even richer than their previous million deal.They’ll have just one week to create each episode, with no time to prep.“Every show, we’re down to the wire,” says Parker, running his hand through his hair in exasperation. It’s a nightmare.” [pullquote] This nightmare, a good problem to have, might have been averted if not for a chance meeting with Robert Lopez in 2004.
“Bobby said, ‘I want to do something about Joseph Smith,’ ” recalls Stone, the younger and more extroverted of the duo, referrring to the founder of the Mormon religion. They had first thought of a fictionalized Smith while working on an aborted Fox TV series about historical characters. “We pretty quickly got to a modern story.” This new version revolved around two young men who would go into the world on behalf of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, a missionary task that’s obligatory for all Mormons.
Now, with Lopez, they started bandying about more concrete ideas — though they weren’t sure if their work would lead to a play or a film or something else altogether — only to realize Smith didn’t provide a strong enough hook. Precisely who they would be and where they would go remained undetermined.
In an effort to hone the tale, the three creators — who jointly wrote the book, music and lyrics — took a research trip to Salt Lake City.
Trey Parker and Matt Stone sit slumped at a table, exhausted.
Their sense of humor has almost vanished, their energy disappeared, their anarchists’ willingness to say “f--- you” to anything that smacks of the establishment has utterly drained away. “The schedule throws you off so much,” says Parker, referring to their new Broadway musical, ’s creators decamped from Los Angeles for New York, they’ve plunged into a frenetic world of rehearsals, rewrites and directing their show — all with, between them, a wife, a girlfriend and two kids in tow.