Among the R-rated comedy boom of the last decade or so, there were the obvious, instant, giant hits: “Knocked Up,” “Superbad,” “The Hangover,” “Bridesmaids.” But there are also the films that, while they didn’t turn the world upside down on release, have proven to be cult hits with long legs, films that have found their way into regular rotation just as much as their more monstrously-grossing cousins.
One such film is “Role Models.” Taking a respectable, but less than earth-shattering $67 million on initial release, the film performed better overseas than some of its more domestically-successful relatives, and has proven to be something of a cable TV and DVD favorite over the past four years. Paul Rudd, David Wain and Ken Marino are imminently reteaming for “Wanderlust,” but the film’s also proven a calling card for Timothy Dowling, who penned the original draft of the screenplay. The former actor has landed plenty of high profile jobs of late, including writing the belated sequel to “Midnight Run,” and McG‘s upcoming action-comedy “This Means War.”
And now he’s coming on to work on a project that’s already full of writers and directors who’ve been well-served by the comedy boom, as Variety reports that Dowling has been hired by DreamWorks for a page one-rewrite on an untitled script by Jon Lucas and Scott Moore, who wrote the original script for “The Hangover.”
The plot revolves around an office Christmas party that goes horribly awry (so, um “The Hangover” in an office, then?), and has had “Blades of Glory” directing team Will Speck and Josh Gordon attached to direct since its inception, with “several top comic actors” circling the project, according to the trade. We suspect Dowling’s hiring is an attempt to make the film less of a Xerox of Lucas and Moore’s biggest hit, which is ironic, as we’re sure that the plot will include at least one scene of someone Xeroxing their ass. With hilarious consequences!
With Dowling rewriting the script from scratch, this one’s a way aways yet, but we’ll see if his career trend is leaning towards “Role Models,” or his last credit “Just Go With It” (*shudder*), when “This Means War” hits theaters on February 17th.