Is the Baywatch movie actually happening now? Paramount Pictures sure hopes so. A film adaptation of the bikini-filled 1990s TV series has been in development for years at the studio, with numerous screenwriters trying to craft a story and tone that would actually translate well to the silver screen. It gained serious momentum last fall when Dwayne Johnson signed on to star, and now another crucial component has clicked into place: a director.
Per THR, Horrible Bosses helmer Seth Gordon is in negotiations to helm Baywatch with Montecito Pictures producing along with Beau Flynn. The aim is a tone in the vein of 21 Jump Street (ie. an action comedy) and the story revolves around a by-the-book and overly serious lifeguard (Johnson) who is forced to team up with a young hothead “in order to save the beach from environmental destruction at the hands of an oil tycoon.”
While the Baywatch film has gone through numerous script drafts, the latest—and the one to give it this momentum—is by Damian Shannon and Mark Swift. The duo penned 2003’s Freddy vs. Jason, 2009’s Friday the 13th, and recently signed on to pen the script for Disney’s live-action Aladdin prequel Genie.
Gordon first broke out with his excellent documentary King of Kong, followed by the very funny Horrible Bosses, but he’s had trouble living up to those two successes in the interim. 2013’s Identity Thief was just plain bad, and he was attached to helm Universal’s Uncharted movie before departing the project a few months ago. Here’s hoping Baywatch is a return to Horrible Bosses territory.
With a director, star, and screenwriter onboard, Baywatch is more real than it’s ever been. A production start-date of early 2016—before Johnson shoots Fast & Furious 8—is being eyed if all goes according to plan, so cue up that theme song folks…