Universal Considers Rashida Jones a FRENEMY OF THE STATE

     October 13, 2009

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Rashida Jones can add “screenwriter” to her resume. Universal has bought the rights to her comic mini-series “Frenemy of the State.” The comic book is about a young wealthy heiress who works undercover for the CIA, and was announced in late July. Many of you will remember Jones as Karen in “The Office.” She’s been on a hot streak recently, as a series regular on NBC’s “Parks & Recreation” and a leading role in “I Love You, Man” earlier this year. More on the comic deal after the jump.

“Frenemy of the State” instantly conjures up two things in my mind: Will Smith and anger toward stupid words that are made up. Will Smith is not in this movie, and it doesn’t seem to be related, though it is coasting on the title of his 1998 spy thriller. For those who don’t know, a “frenemy” is a friend who is secretly your enemy. I used to hate the word “blog” too, as it should be called a “web log.” Alas, there are no word combinations brief enough for modern ears.

This will be Rashida Jones first screenplay, which she’ll co-write with Will McCormack, who is a recurring character in “Brothers & Sisters” and “In Plain Sight.” Rashida Jones penned the original comic along with Nunzio DeFilippis and Christina Weir–both regular comic writers. I’m a bit hesitant because neither her nor McCormack have writing experience, but it could be good. It’s giving off an “Alias” vibe to me. Here’s how Jones describes “Frenemy” to Variety below.

“It’s intended for a girl much younger than me, about age 20, an interesting age for girls as they make that scary jump to adulthood,” she said. “She has lived a life of privilege, attended the best schools and learned every language, but her obsession with spying on exes gets her into trouble and she is recruited to be a spy in exchange for not going to prison. There is a comic element to it, this girl who is so conscious of social standing and wearing the right shoes, suddenly becoming responsible for these dangerous, life-threatening missions.”

Also, be sure to check out “Parks & Recreation” this season. It’s finally picking up momentum.

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