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Seth Rogen, Green Hornet?

Seth Rogen has amazed me this year with his ability to go from one of the supporting ensemble guys in The 40-Year-Old Virgin to a truly leading role with some serious depth in Knocked Up. Still, both movies are comedies, so the idea that Rogen may be stepping out of his comedic safety zone and tackling a new genre is quite shocking.

Variety is reporting that Rogen is in talks with Columbia pictures to write, produce, and star in their adaptation of Green Hornet. You know, the same Green Hornet that has had everyone from Kevin Smith to George Clooney attached to at some point? The picture has equally been through a number of studios along the way before settling at Columbia most recently.

I know Rogen has some skill in writing, having done some work on “Undeclared” as well as this summer’s Superbad, but these are all in the comedic genre. I have to wonder if Rogen would turn Green Hornet into a comedy or treat it with some reverence. After all, the archaic superhero is hardly a match for X-Men, Batman Begins, or most of the superhero flicks out there today. What was the millionaire-turned-crimefighter’s super power again? Yeah, I could hear Rogen-as-Green-Hornet doing a five-minute comedic diatribe on that alone. How about Jay Baruchel or Paul Rudd as Kato, the sidekick once played by Bruce Lee?

Still, there’s something to be said for stepping out of one’s comfort zone. Fans applauded and wondered with the same curiosity how Kevin Smith would handle the material when he was signed on to write the picture. Rogen and Smith might be cut from the same stock, so we should give Rogen just as fair a shake as we were willing to give Smith.