Credits: Counterbalance Entertainment; Cobra Kai, Blockers
HAYDEN SCHLOSSBERG is one of the writers/directors/producers for YouTube Premium’s hit show, Cobra Kai. Together with Jon Hurwitz and Josh Heald, they recently signed an overall deal with Sony Pictures Television and formed their production company, Counterbalance Entertainment. Schlossberg, along with Hurwitz, is also known for creating New Line Cinema’s buddy comedy franchise, Harold & Kumar, writing and directing Universal’s 2012 worldwide hit, American Reunion, and producing Universal’s critically acclaimed comedy Blockers.
Schlossberg and Hurwitz have close friends since their high school days in Randolph, NJ where they bonded over a shared love of movies and comedy. Schlossberg majored in history at the University of Chicago and the duo stayed in touch and decided to write a screenplay during their summer break. Two months before graduation, MGM bought that script and it prompted them to move to Hollywood and pursue their dream careers as screenwriters.
Schlossberg’s first taste of success came in 2004 when he and Hurwitz created New Line Cinema’s critically acclaimed comedy, Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle. The New York Times hailed the film as “one of the few recent comedies that persuasively, and intelligently, engage the social realities of contemporary multicultural America.” In addition to widespread critical acclaim, the film garnered a legion of fans that launched Harold & Kumar to immediate cult status. And thus, two sequels followed: 2008’s Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay, which became Hurwitz and Schlossberg’s feature directorial debut, and 2011’s A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas.
In 2012, Universal Pictures approached Schlossberg & Hurwitz to tackle the American Pie series. 2012’s American Reunion instantly became a fan favorite and went on to earn $235 million worldwide, making it one of the highest-grossing R-rated comedies of all time. The next feature film for the duo was Blockers starring John Cena, Leslie Mann, and Ike Barinholtz which bowed to rave reviews at SXSW and premiered in theater April 6, 2018.
The two teamed with longtime friend and collaborator Josh Heald to create the YouTube Premium series, Cobra Kai, which is a continuation of the original Karate Kid saga. The series was just picked up for a third season after its enormous success – over 60M viewers have watched the series premiere episode and Season 2 garnered over 20M views in 10 days. The first season of the series received a 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and the site named it 2018’s “Drama of the Year.” The three creators will continue to serve as showrunners as well as to write and direct much of the series.