Briefly: Alan Ball has quite a career as a writer and producer (Six Feet Under, True Blood, and there’s his Oscar for American Beauty) but a thinner resume when it comes to directing theatrical features. In 2007, his adaptation of Alicia Erian’s novel Towelhead was better than some narrow-minded controversy-stirring appraisals made it out to be. And now he’s going to helm a new feature, based on a pitch bought by Paramount.

Deadline reports that Alan Ball will produce and direct the ‘dark comedy with a twist.’ The script will be written by Elan Mastai, who wrote The F-Word, which is set up at Fox Searchlight after appearing on the Black List in 2008. In this case, the original story idea was concocted by the True Blood producer, and he and Mr. Mastai developed the pitch together. That’s all we’ve got at this point, but we’ll follow up as more info arrives.

(And calling Alan Ball the creator of True Blood may rile fans of the novels, but from the perspective of television credits, he’s the show’s creator. That’s all we’re getting at there.)

The F-Word

Fox Searchlight has signed In Search of a Midnight Kiss helmer Alex Holdridge to direct The F-Word, a screenplay which was listed on the 2008 Black List (an insider Hollywood listing of the best unproduced screenplays of the year). The biggest surprise about the F-Word is that it isn’t the four letter word Fuck. It’s “Friend”.

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