The last time we saw Charlize Theron was in 2012, when she was being a total douchebag in space for Ridley Scott’s Prometheus and a total bitch in the woods for Rupert Sanders’ Snow White and the Huntsman. And before that, she was a self-centered grunt in Jason Reitman’s Young Adult. Luckily, the next project she’s eyeing features a far more sympathetic woman at its core. She and her producer partners at Denver and Delilah Films have acquired the 2008 novel Everything Nice, from author Ellen Shanman, and Theron may also take the lead role.

Universal snatched up the project based on a pitch, and this should be a fine balance for the busier movies in their 2015 release schedule, including Jurassic World and Fast & Furious 7. The novel is largely comedic and very female-centered, focusing on Michaela "Mike" Edwards, an advertising executive who finds herself in the middle of an office debacle and loses her job. Against all of her good judgment, she moves back home with her widowed father and takes a job teaching life skills to sixth-grade girls, even though she’s not exactly sure how to handle herself, as evidenced by a growing relationship with her best friend.

Actually, that sounds a lot like the role she played in Young Adult, just with a little more baggage attached. And she absolutely nailed that part, so I’m interested to see what kind of a director will get behind this project, and whether it will cling more to realism or cheery melodrama.

According to Deadline, the screenplay will be written by Karen Croner, whom the producers approached and signed before taking the project to Universal. Smart. Croner’s two produced screenplays were 1998’s drama One True Thing, for which Meryl Streep earned an Oscar nom, and 2013’s comedy Admission, which earned Tina Fey and Paul Rudd zilch.

Theron, whose Denver and Delilah is developing Agent 13 with Universal, only has high profile projects coming up, which should help Everything Nice by the time it comes out. She’s leading Gilles Paquet-Brenner’s adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s bestselling mystery thriller Dark Places and stars as the colorfully named Imperator Furiosa in George Miller’s return to the post-apocalyptic world with Mad Max: Fury Road opposite Tom Hardy. But first, comedy fans will get to see her flash her funny bone with Seth MacFarlane in the upcoming gag-fest A Million Ways to Die in the West. It’ll be in theaters May 30, and you can check out the hilarious trailer below.

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