Steve Carell paranoid thriller

Gore Verbinski is a good director who might just need the proper project to spark him back to life after The Lone Ranger. Steve Carell is an actor transitioning from one career phase to another, thanks to Foxcatcher (above). The idea of the two of them working together on a thriller is pretty intriguing, and that’s just what’s happening on an as-yet untitled new film that New Regency is putting together right now.

What details we have on that are below, but there’s more: Verbinski and New Regency are actually putting together a package of three films the director might do in fairly quick succession.

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Will Ferrell tennis movie

Anchorman star Will Ferrell is going back to the ’70s — but this time, he’ll be the guy making the news, not reporting it. Ferrell is attached to star in Match Maker, a drama about the legendary 1973 “Battle of the Sexes” tennis match between Bobby Riggs and Billie Jean King.

Steve Conrad (The Secret Life of Walter Mitty) is adapting the script from a 2013 ESPN article by Don Van Natta Jr. titled “The Match Maker: Bobby Riggs, the Mafia and the Battle of the Sexes.” More details after the jump.

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Emile Hirsch Will Play John Belushi

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Briefly: The shortlist of actors to play the late actor/comedian John Belushi in a new biopic was pretty strange: Emile Hirsch and Adam Devine were mentioned, and Joaquin Phoenix came up as a longshot. Of the three, Phoenix seems to have the best energy for the role. But he won’t play the part. Emile Hirsch has been hired  to play Belushi for writer/director Steve Conrad. The script is adapted from the book Belushi, written by Judy Belushi Pisano and Tanner Colby.

Hirsch is great, but it’s still difficult to see him as a great choice for this part. Given that Dan Aykroyd is an exec producer on the film it seems unlikely that this movie will be focused solely on Belushi’s excesses and downfall, but even as part of a balanced narrative it’s difficult to see Hirsch really inhabiting Belushi. There are elements of his performances in the past that suggest he can get parts of Belushi’s personality down, but it’s difficult to imagine him going as big as he’ll have to. This will be an interesting one to see play out. [Variety]

John Belushi as Bumble Bee at Skating Rink

We’re all just going to pretend Wired, that ill-fated screen version of a John Belishi biography, never happened. (Sorry, Michael Chiklis.) But that doesn’t mean that Hollywood wants Belushi to be forgotten, and in fact there’s another screen biography brewing about the late comedian and actor.

The same project that once had The Hangover director Todd Phillips tied to the director’s chair now has a new director, and a handful of potential stars as well. They include Emile Hirsch and Joaquin Phoenix, neither of whom springs to mind as a first choice, but each of whom has an appeal that becomes evident after some thought. Read More »

While half the talk that involves Kristen Wiig of late seems to revolve around whether or not she wants to do a sequel to Bridesmaids (she doesn’t) the actress is moving on to other stuff.

She has already shot Imogene and another indie called Revenge of the Jolly!, and now she’s looking at a role in Ben Stiller‘s remake of the classic comic fantasy The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. Read More »

Two of comedy’s most marketable faces, teaming up for a little Internet humor, have now found a host. Director Seth Gordon (Horrible Bosses, The King of Kong) has signed on to direct a Universal comedy called Identity Theft starring Arrested Development‘s Jason Bateman and Bridesmaids breakout actress Melissa McCarthy. The casting was announced a few months back but the title has now changed, along with the addition of a director.

In the film, written by Steve Conrad (The Pursuit of Happyness), Bateman will play a normal guy whose identity is stolen by McCarthy. Originally, McCarthy’s part was written for a man but after Bateman, who is also a producer, saw Bridesmaids, he asked for a rewrite by Craig Mazin (The Hangover Part II). Read more after the jump.

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Walter Mitty fancies himself a hero. At least in his dreams. The writer/perpetual daydreamer spends all of his time pretending that he’s an action hero until, one day, he actually finds himself in the middle of a real life scenario where he’ll be able to turn those dreams into reality. That’s the basic gist of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, a 1947 film starring Danny Kaye that was based on a famous New Yorker article of the same name by James Thurber.

Talks of remaking that film have rumbling for some time, with Sacha Baron Cohen once attached to star and Gore Verbinski once attached to direct. And while those names have gone away, what remains is a brand new script by The Pursuit of Happyness scribe Steve Conrad. According to Deadline, Ben Stiller loves Conrad’s script and wants to make it his next starring vehicle. Read more after the break. Read More »

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