After bringing Arrested Development back from the dead on Netflix earlier this year, creator Mitch Hurwitz is ready to step into the feature film world. THR reports that Hurwitz will direct the comedy Guinea Pigging for Fox 2000 with Night at the Museum scribes Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant writing the script. The story is based on a 2008 New Yorker article about the world of people who make a living acting as test subjects for drug companies, hospitals, and pharmacies. The script is described as “a sophisticated comedy about a human drug test subject who volunteers for testing at a pharmaceutical company and experiences unusual side effects.”
This will mark Hurwitz’s feature directorial debut, though he has directed several episodes of Arrested Development. Though Lennon and Garant have made a living penning more family friendly pics like The Pacifier and Herbie Fully Loaded, the Reno 911! duo have also written a number of more adult-oriented projects like this year’s comedy Hell Baby. With Hurwitz onboard to direct, one imagines Guinea Pigging falls into the latter category.
From writer/directors Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant (Reno 911!), the outrageous horror comedy Hell Baby tells the story of expectant couple Jack (Rob Corddry) and Vanessa (Leslie Bibb), who move into a haunted fixer-upper in New Orleans and soon find themselves enlisting the help of the Vatican’s elite exorcism team. An overly friendly neighbor living in the house’s crawl space (Keegan Michael Key), Vanessa’s Wiccan sister (Riki Lindhome), and two inept detectives (Rob Huebel and Paul Scheer) only add to the ever-growing chaos and mayhem unfolding around them.
At the film’s press day, first-time feature directors Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant spoke to Collider for this exclusive interview about how they ended up as a writing and directing team, their writing process, having complete freedom on their first independent feature, getting to cast who they wanted, and how much improvisation went on. They also talked about how they went in for a general meeting at Paramount and ended up writing the Baywatch: Red Tide script, which references some of the crazy storylines from the TV show. Check out what they had to say after the jump.
We’re happy to bring you an exclusive clip from writers-directors Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant’s Hell Baby, which features the duo arriving on the scene of a gruesome murder as the not-so-conventional Vatican exorcism team. This early look also stars Rob Huebel and Paul Scheer as two detectives overwhelmed by the rising body count. Get caught up on the horror-comedy with this recently-released red-band trailer and read Matt’s Sundance review here.
Also starring Rob Corddry, Leslie Bibb, Keegan Michael Key and Michael Ian Black, Hell Baby opens in limited release on September 6th. Hit the jump to watch our exclusive clip.
At the press day for the horror comedy Hell Baby, from writer/directors Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant (Reno 911!), Collider got the opportunity to chat with the hilarious pair. While we will post what they had to say about that film, closer to its September 6th theatrical release, we did want to share what they had to say about the Baywatch movie that they’ve written, and that Garant plans to direct.
During the interview, they talked about how they went in for a general meeting at Paramount and ended up writing the Baywatch: Red Tide script, that they’d like to make a bunch of movies, how it’s basically Reno 911! with sexy people, that it’s a Point Break-type action-comedy, and that they did reference some of the crazy storylines from the TV show. Check out what they had to say after the jump.
A new red-band trailer for the horror parody Hell Baby has been released online. From writers/directors Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant, the film follows a husband (Rob Corddry) and his pregnant wife (Leslie Bibb) who move into a haunted house in a crappy New Orleans neighborhood, and then need the help of a couple Italian exorcists (Lennon and Garant) when the wife becomes possessed. The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year to mixed reviews (read Matt’s here), but this trailer shows that the film definitely has at least a few solid laughs. Unsurprisingly, Keegan Michael Key is the highlight.
Hit the jump to watch the red-band trailer. The film also stars Riki Lindhome, Paul Scheer, Rob Huebel, Kumail Nanjiani, and Michael Ian Black. Hell Baby will be available on iTunes on July 25th, and hits theaters on September 6th.
Millennium Entertainment has released a trailer for the horror parody Hell Baby. The film follows a husband (Rob Corddry) and his pregnant wife (Leslie Bibb) who move into a haunted house in a crappy New Orleans neighborhood, and then need the help of a couple Italian exorcists (writer-directors Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant) when the wife becomes possessed. I caught the film at Sundance, and there’s a solid 30 minutes of hilarious material, which wouldn’t be so bad if the film wasn’t 90 minutes long. That hit-to-miss ratio is pretty well demonstrated in this trailer, which mostly features Lennon and Garant doing their silly Italian accents.
Hit the jump to check out the trailer. The film also stars Riki Lindhome, Paul Scheer, Rob Huebel, Keegan Michael Key, Kumail Nanjiani, and Michael Ian Black. Hell Baby will be available on iTunes on July 25th, and hits theaters on September 6th.
If writer-directors Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant had put more effort into their new film Hell Baby, they could have had one of the best parodies of recent horror movies. The film has some huge laughs as well as some insight into the genre’s weaknesses, but Lennon and Garant’s sketch comedy roots wreck the picture in the worst way. They’re content to let their scenes run on way too long, they have no idea how to tie their scenes together, and the result feels like we’re in the middle of something that’s being workshopped rather than a finished feature. Despite a memorable performance from Keegan Michael Key, Hell Baby feels like a gigantic waste of potential that keeps us interested because we’re waiting for the next great joke.
Just because you forgot about it doesn’t mean it’s not happening. Paramount is still trying to develop a feature film based on the popular slow motion running drama series Baywatch, and some new blood has been brought in to revitalize the project. Screenwriter Peter Tolan (Rescue Me) was previously tapped to write the script, and last year he revealed that his take would be a comedy adaptation more akin to Stripes rather than a straight feature film iteration of the self-serious lifeguard series. Now Vulture reports that Reno 911! co-creator and star Robert Ben Garant has been lined up to direct the film.
Garant previously directed Reno 911! Miami and Balls of Fury and has forged a successful screenwriting career with fellow Reno 911! cohort Thomas Lennon. The duo wrote the Night at the Museum films as well as other family fare like Herbie Fully Loaded and The Pacifier (they chronicled their success in the book Writing Movies For Fun And Profit). Though a Baywatch film in and of itself sounds like a bad idea, I wouldn’t be opposed to seeing a Reno 911! take on the group of lifeguards. No word on whether Garant would take a stab at the script himself, but I assume he’ll put his own spin on the material.
Director Tom McGrath (Megamind) may make his live-action debut directing denizens of the afterlife in Rentaghost, starring Ben Stiller. The picture, inspired by a British children’s TV series, follows “an American turnaround consultant who is sent to the UK to reinvigorate a failing company,” and finds jobs for ghosts and ghouls. Having co-directed all three of the wildly successful Madagascar movies, McGrath would reunite with Stiller, who voiced Alex the Lion in the animated films.
Before Fox picked the picture up from Warner Bros., it had starred Russell Brand in the lead role. With Stiller attached and Night at the Museum scribes, Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant writing, McGrath’s addition could further seal up box-office gold as families will likely head to the theaters in droves when the movie opens next year. McGrath’s entry into negotiations comes via Variety.
Peter Segal (Get Smart) is reportedly in talks to direct Vin Diesel (The Fast and the Furious) in the action film, The Machine for MGM. At the moment, Segal is currently attached to Warner Bros. pictures Grudge Match and the adaptation of the manga, Bleach, so this more than likely won’t be his next feature. Segal is producing Bleach and may end up directing the picture, while he is attached to direct the Grudge Match, about a boxing rematch between aging fighters. Diesel, meanwhile, is currently in post-production on The Untitled Chronicles of Riddick Sequel, which we can expect to see sometime early next year. Hit the jump for more information on his involvement in The Machine, as well as the picture’s plot synopsis.
We’ve got a few bits of casting news to bring to you today. Here they are at a glance:
- Steve Carell and Jake Johnson ( New Girl) will join an untitled mob-themed comedy for Warner Bros.
- Joelle Carter (Justified) joins Saw 3D director Kevin Gruetert’s horror-thriller, Jessabelle.
- Jose Maria Yazpik (The Burning Plain) will star in Pedro Almodovar’s upcoming romantic comedy, The Brief Lovers.
Hit the jump for more on each project.
Reno 911! stars and non-stop screenwriters Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant are set to make their co-directorial debut on the horror comedy Hell Baby, and they’ve found their two leads. Darko Entertainment announced today that Rob Corddry and Leslie Bibb (Talladega Nights) have signed on to star in the comedy that centers on a young expectant couple who moves in to New Orleans most haunted fixer-upper and calls upon The Vatican’s elite exorcism team to save them from a demonic baby. Lennon and Garant wrote the script, will co-direct, and plan to star as the Vatican’s exorcism team.
Lennon and Garant have made a nice living in recent years writing younger-skewing comedies like The Pacifier and the Night at the Museum films (they even wrote a book entitled Writing Movies for Fun and Profit). Hell Baby sounds like it has hints of Rosemary’s Baby, and for Corddry’s sake as a comedian I hope they’ve written a more adult comedy. Bibb currently stars on the ABC series GCB and Corddry recently wrapped the zombie adaptation Warm Bodies. Hit the jump to read the press release.
For the past three decades, Nicolas Cage has given us, the movie-going public, all that he has to offer. Do you think he dresses up like a bear and throws devastating hay-makers at unsuspecting women to satisfy some sick urge of his own? No, he does it for us! He gives and he gives and he gives and all we do is take. But twelve years ago, we took too much. And at long last, someone will shed light on the harrowing tale of how somebody stole Nic’s ultra-rare Action Comics #1, the 1938 comic that introduced the world to Superman.
In Action No. 1, Reno! 911 creators Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant have scribed a comedic (and obviously fictionalized) account of the robbery, which has been picked up by Lionsgate. Lennon and Garant wrote the script with the hope that Cage would be willing to play himself, but that likely won’t happen. Hit the jump for more.
Last December, Russell Brand signed on to Rentaghost based on the British children’s TV series that ran from 1976 to 1984. The show centered around a company that rents out ghosts to perform various tasks, and Brand was set to play “Fred Mumford, a recently deceased loser who feels he can find work for ghosts whose lives were as failed as his.” However, Deadline now reports that Brand has dropped out of the film and has been replaced by Ben Stiller who will partner with his Night at the Museum writers Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant.
The plot will now have Stiller playing “an American turnaround consultant who is sent to the UK to reinvigorate a failing company.” Fox sees it as another strong family franchise and I see it as another film where Stiller will be the straight man to a cast of zany ghosts who help him to learn a valuable lesson. Hit the jump for a recap of other films Stiller has in the pipeline.
The guy who co-wrote the book on writing movies for
fun and profit (no, but really) has landed another gig. Robert Ben Garant, who recently released the book Writing Movies for Fun and Profit with his writing partner Thomas Lennon, has signed on to adapt the Japanese graphic novel Tuxedo Gin for Disney. The project’s title will be shortened to Tux and, according to Deadline, will center on a young street fighter who receives a tough lesson in karma upon lapsing into a coma.
As writer/artist Tokihiko Matsuura’s story goes, the fighter’s selfish earthly ways lead to him being reincarnated as a penguin, an obstacle he must overcome if he wishes to return to his less penguin-like state and former flame alike. Garant will executive produce the film alongside Isamu Kamei. In addition to Tux, Garant also has writing credits on titles such as Night at the Museum, Herbie Fully Loaded, Balls of Fury, The Pacifier, and Reno 911!. Recently, he and Garant co-wrote the screenplay for the action/comedy The Machine starring Vin Diesel.