Ben Stiller has lined up another directing gig. He’s shifting from straight comedy to drama with comic overtones, and helming a movie called Help Me Spread Goodness for Participant Media, according to Variety.

The film tackles the now cliché world of Nigerian prince Internet scams. It tells the story of a Chicago banker swindled by one. Here’s the weird thing. Apparently one of the goals of the film is to shed light on the problems of Nigeria and other African countries. So we’re supposed to feel sorry for them… while they’re ripping us off. Liberal guilt anyone?

Ben’s previous directing gigs have been a lot more fun, with The Cable Guy followed by Zoolander followed by Tropic Thunder. Since the success of Thunder, he seems to be bent on taking a more serious, politically charged turn. He’s already in pre-production on The Trial of the Chicago 7, about the arrest and incarceration of Abbie Hoffman and seven other civil rights protestors in the 60s. Mix in Help Me Spread Goodness, and it doesn’t look like he plans to return to the likes of Mugatu anytime soon.

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