The long in-development live-action movie based on R.L. Stine's popular horror series Goosebumps is finally taking some major steps towards production, and today it's not only been revealed who is likely to star in it, but also what the basic story is about. The Wrap is reporting that Jack Black is now in negotiations to star in the film, which is set to be directed by Rob Letterman.
According to the new story, the film will have Black playing the role of a "Stine-like author," which presumably means that he will primarily focus on young-adult horror. Problems begin, however, when the stuff that the writer puts on the page begin to come alive and torment him (which kind of makes the movie sound like a scary version of John Candy's 1991 film Delirious). There is no mention of who is responsible for this version of the screenplay, though it was only in 2012 that Sony hired Jack The Giant Slayer scribe Darren Lemke to write a script
While it's a bit hard to explain, there's something about this casting that just sits perfectly with me. I was a big fan of the book series growing up, and loved that they balanced out occasionally legitimately spooky stories with a side of goofiness and fun. Provided that Black doesn't go too far off the rails, which admittedly tends to be the biggest problem with his style, then the star should be a good fit for the tone of the story mixing a fun sense of humor with the intensity that comes with being the lead singer of Tenacious D.
What does give me pause about this project is Letterman's presence as director. He has previously worked with Black two times before, and the results were Shark Tale and Gulliver's Travels (the latter of which was his live-action debut). It's possible that this time around he'll be working from a better script - the story sounds at least mildly interesting - and he's got a better sense of live-action filmmaking, but I'm hesitant to hold my breath.
Black hasn't been doing a ton of film work as of late, but very recently got rave reviews for his turn as real-life serial killer Bernie Tiede in Richard Linklater's festival hit Bernie. He'll next have a small role in the Jake Kasdan-directed comedy Sex Tape with Jason Segel and Cameron Diaz, and will be returning to voicing Po in 2015's Kung Fu Panda 3.
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