Frequent collaborators Jason Segel and Nicholas Stoller may have toned down their raunchy humor for The Muppets script, but they could be diving back into adult-themed material with Sex Tape. Stoller is in talks to direct the raunchy comedy, written by Kate Angelo, while Segel has been offered the male lead. Though neither has officially signed on just yet, given the material and their proclivity for working together, it seems reasonably likely they’ll ultimately board the project together.

Less certain is who’ll play Segel’s co-star, should he sign on. Though Reese Witherspoon is Sony’s top choice, the A-list actress is apparently a long shot. Happily, the studio already has a shortlist of other strong candidates, which include some of the usual suspects. More details after the jump.

Angelo’s script revolves around a married couple who decide to get away from their kids for the night and spice up their love life by making a private sex tape. However, when they wake up the next morning to find that the video has disappeared, they begin a frantic search to reclaim it.

The premise seems right up Stoller and Segel’s alley. Sex Tape sounds like it has the potential to strike that raunchy-sweet balance that made Forgetting Sarah Marshall — which Stoller directed and Segel wrote and starred in — a critical and commercial success. (Also, it probably has at least one opportunity for Segel to get naked again.) The pair’s working relationship goes back to 2001, when Stoller wrote for Judd Apatow’s Undeclared, on which Segel played a recurring character.

Witherspoon, on the other hand, would be stepping a bit out of her comfort zone were she to board the picture. Variety‘s Jeff Sneider calls her casting a “long shot,” and notes that the studio is considering several other actresses who could play the female lead in case Witherspoon turns it down. Among the actresses on that list are Amy Adams, Emily Blunt, Rose Byrne, and Jennifer Garner.

While I think any of those actresses would do well in the role, particularly the underrated Byrne, part of me hopes Witherspoon will take the offer. Her most recent roles haven’t exactly been edgy, and a slightly obscene comedy like Sex Tape could be a good opportunity for her to branch out a bit without destroying her “America’s Sweetheart” image too completely.

Most of the other actresses have worked with Segel, Stoller, or both in the past. Adams plays Segel’s girlfriend in next month’s The Muppets, and Blunt stars opposite him in The Five-Year Engagement. Byrne had a supporting role in Stoller’s Get Him to the Greek.

[Source: Deadline]

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