Who would’ve thought that Jonah Hill, who started his career off with bit parts in David O. Russell’s “I Heart Huckabees” and “The 40-Year-Old Virgin,” would someday be an Academy Award-nominated actor? Fresh off some Oscar clout for his superb dramatic turn in “Moneyball,” he’s continuing with his ambitious ventures in writing and producing, along with earning roles in highly touted upcoming comedies like “21 Jump Street” and “Neighborhood Watch.” Though it was back in September we showed you Hill’s directing debut, with the charming Sara Bareilles-crooned video for “Gonna Get Over You,” there was another project that caught Hill’s eye for his feature debut: “The Kitchen Sink.”
However, it looks like his full slate of projects may have caused him to move on from his plans to direct the Black List-approved script by Oren Uziel, a “Monster Squad” meets “Super 8”-style adventure flick that follows “the unlikely alliance between a high school-aged vampire, zombie and human as they try to save their town from invading aliens.” Though when one door closes, another opens, so helmer Robbie Pickering is stepping in to fill the director’s chair instead of Hill. For those unfamiliar, Pickering is best known for his recent Independent Spirit Award-nominated drama “Natural Selection,” which had its debut last year at SXSW. Matt Tolmach is still on board to produce, making this one of his first gigs as producer along with “The Amazing Spider-Man” following his departure as Sony Pictures president.
This is a pretty big step up for Pickering, though it doesn’t really feel as if this was a film that was going to be a massively budgeted tentpole to begin with. We could see “The Kitchen Sink” becoming a modest little genre mash-up that based on premise alone should be able to get the job done as long as they don’t screw it up. As for Hill’s departure, there seems to be no comment on what happened, but we’d like to speculate it was due to his ever increasing workload. Hopefully this will give Pickering a chance to apply his sensibilities to the genre concoction. [Deadline]