The film, due out Feb. 21, stars Will Ferrell, Luke Wilson and Vince Vaughn as thirtysomething buddies who try to recapture the fun of their college years by starting their own off-campus frat. "This came out of a sense of getting older and having obligations creeping into your life and not feeling as spontaneous as you once did," says Crandall, who was a Phi Kappa Theta in college. "I thought it was a funny idea for a bunch of guys my age to desperately try to reclaim their youth."
Old School wouldn't have been made without some healthy fraternization in the ad industry. Todd Phillips, who co-wrote the screenplay from Crandall's story and also directed the movie, has directed Virgin Cola and ESPN campaigns for Ground Zero. "Ad agencies are full of really funny writers," says Phillips. "There are a ton of guys who can make the jump [to screenwriting]."
Crandall has written other scripts, including The Adman, which is about an ad executive who is hired to promote Hell. But he says he has no plans to leave advertising for a "fickle" profession like screenwriting full-time.