Owen Wilson Goes Full Bob Ross in Trailer for Art Comedy ‘Paint’ (Video)

Wilson plays a Bob Ross-like painter who’s challenged by a younger and more inclusive artist in the upcoming film

The hook of IFC’s “Paint” seems to be “What if Bob Ross was challenged for public broadcasting painting supremacy by a younger and, yes, more inclusive artist?” Think “All About Eve” or “Showgirls,” in this case offering a set-in-their-ways veteran on-television painter and art instructor being usurped by a younger, more exciting upstart. 

Owen Wilson isn’t literally playing late painter Bob Ross, who died at the age of 52 in 1995. However, at least some of the comedy offered up in the latest trailer for “Paint” is contingent upon audiences being somewhat aware of the beloved, soft-spoken artist. The hair, the gee-whiz sentiment and the soft color palette are all clear as crystal.  

The only thing anointing this film as set in the present day, as opposed to the 1980s or 1990s, is a brief reference to an Uber. Well, that and an apparently intimate moment between Renée and Michaela Watkins. 

In terms of broad plot, “Paint” does not seem that far off from Will Ferrell’s “Anchorman” 19 years ago. However, that film was a broadly farcical 1970s period piece. Moreover, while “Anchorman” ended with the dueling local news anchors played by Ferrell and Christina Applegate as a monogamous couple, one can surmise that Owen Wilson’s Carl Nargle and the young upstart (Ciara Renée, who played Hawkgirl in several of the CW’s “Arrowverse” shows) will not end the film in each other’s arms. 

“Paint,” based on a 2010 Black List screenplay, is the feature film directorial debut for Brit McAdams, who co-directed a 2006 documentary — “Triviatown” — about “The World’s Largest Trivia Contest.”

The comedy, which was shot in Albany, New York in 2021 and also co-stars Stephen Root, Lucy Fry and Wendi McLendon-Covey, opens theatrically courtesy of IFC Films on April 7, 2023.  

Watch the first trailer for “Paint” in the video above, and check out the film’s poster below.

Poster for ‘Paint,’ courtesy of IFC Films