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Disney flick pick quite a ‘Stretch’

Now here’s a stretch.

Disney-based producers Joe Roth and Roger Birnbaum made official Friday a deal between their Caravan Pictures and CAPS Toys Inc. to produce a movie based on “Stretch Armstrong”– the 15-inch doll, filled inside with corn syrup, that stretches to twice its size.

To direct the movie, Caravan has tapped Jay Dubin, who has spent the last 11 years in the world of television.

The announcement of the “Stretch Armstrong” deal capped a big week for Roth and Birnbaum, who along with filmmakers Nancy Meyers and Charles Shyer, earned rave reviews from Disney execs at a Wednesday screening to studio execs of the Julia Roberts starrer “I Love Trouble,” which bows this summer.

“Stretch” is scheduled for a 1995 release under the Walt Disney Pictures banner. The project is described as the story of a man, who through an industrial accident gains the power to stretch his body to unbelievable lengths.

Screenwriters of “Stretch” are Mike Werb (“The Mask”) and Michael Colleary. Producers are Doug Draizin and John Osher, while Roth and Birnbaum will executive produce. Caravan will take out “Stretch” to actors’ agents shortly, looking for an accomplished physical comedian to play the title role.

Producer Draizin originally took the “Stretch Armstrong” premise to Caravan. He also reps director Dubin through his management company, Draizin Co.

“Stretch” is the latest fast-track project for Caravan, which signed a five-year, 25-picture deal with Disney in November 1992. Earlier this year, Daily Variety reported an extraordinary production pace at Caravan, including 10 potential productions in 1994 alone. The pace sets the stage for Caravan to potentially deliver all 25 movies to Disney within three 3 years, which in turn sets the stage for a potential Wall Street spin-off at that time.

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