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From a studio’s perspective, Shawn Levy’s a bankable name. As a director, he’s helmed such lucrative titles as Cheaper By the Dozen ($138.6 million), Night at the Museum ($$250.8M) and its sequel ($177M). So when he comes up with a potential concept and a spec script from Black List screenwriter Brian Duffield, you can understand why a studio like Paramount would be willing to take a gamble.
The project, according to Heat Vision, is titled Monster Problems, which the trade describes as “a post-apocalyptic road movie in the vein of Mad Max and Zombieland with a John Hughes-esque love story at its center.”
Interesting. That’s a number of different, opposing genres that Duffield will have to try and fit into one workable script. Will it be dramatic like Max? Funny like Zombieland? We don’t know much about Duffield yet, but two of his in-the-works projects have attracted major names. His Black List script Jane Got a Gun has Natalie Portman swirling around it development. And Eli Craig plans to direct Duffield’s screenplay Your Bridesmaid’s a Bitch, currently set up at Skydance.
As for Monster Problems, Levy likely, would produce but pass the directing baton to someone else. He’s about to start shooting his anticipated comedy The Internship, which reunites Wedding Crashers co-stars Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson. Levy’s also rumored to take over The 39 Steps from director Brett Ratner. So unless Paramount wants to push Problems back to wait for Levy, expect directing and casting news to develop on this concept shortly.