Universal is currently working on three projects, two of which don’t exactly interest us and a third which, if done properly, could be incredibly entertaining.
The first film will be produced by Jay Roach (“Meet the Parents,” “Game Change”) and will be written by “Little Fockers” scribe Larry Stuckey. Being described as a “family action comedy,” the movie is about a couple who give up their exciting lifestyle to have children only to have the husband mix his wife and kids up in a search for a hidden icon. Dean Parisot (“Fun With Dick and Jane”) is in talks to direct. No word yet on a director or star but clearly they’re going for something big with this one given the names attached thus far.
Next, followers of the new cult favorite “Uglydoll” franchise and best-selling toy brand, will be happy to find out that Universal is developing an animated feature based on the characters created by David Horvath and Sun-Min Kim (both will serve as executive producers). The suddenly busy Larry Stuckey will be writing this script as well, though no definite production dates have been announced. The rights have been been picked up by Chris Meledandri of Illumination Entertainment which is riding high off the one-two hits of “Despicable Me” and “Hop.”
Finally, the bright spot for us is the announcement of a film centering on real-life Secret Service Agent training based on the July 26, 2009 Washington Post Magazine article “The Making Of An Agent” by Laura Blumenfeld. One of the most mysterious branches of the federal government, most people don’t know how agents are recruited or where and how they train so this project has a definite sense of intrigue. Greg Poirier (“The Spy Next Door,” “National Treasure: Book of Secrets“) is writing the script which has us a bit worried. But let’s hope he’s done with the light entertainment and delivers something worthy of the subject. —Matthew Newlin [THR/Deadline/Deadline]