Ferrell to be paid 4 mil for starring, scripting role

DreamWorks has bested several other studios to buy “Action News,” a comedy starring “Old School” star Will Ferrell.

Ferrell will be paid close to $4 million to topline the laffer he co-wrote with Adam McKay.

McKay, the former head writer of “Saturday Night Live,” makes his directing debut on the film. Shooting begins in July.

Ferrell will play a pompous newscaster in the 1970s who’s matched with an ambitious female colleague who is actually a talented journalist. He then comes to the stirring realization that his perfect hair and mustache, and the ability to read from a TelePrompTer, might not be good enough at his Portland, Ore., TV station.

Ferrell and McKay are pals from “SNL,” and “Action News” is among several feature projects they’ve hatched.

Project originated at DreamWorks and shifted to New Regency and then New Line.

It suddenly became a hot property again when DreamWorks opened its Todd Phillips-directed “Old School.” The $25 million film was brought back to the marketplace, and DreamWorks’ Michael De Luca and Adam Goodman won the film over the weekend.

“Action News” will be produced by Judd Apatow, with David O. Russell and Shauna Weinberg exec producing. Gold-Miller repped Ferrell, Apatow and McKay. UTA repped Ferrell, and Endeavor repped McKay.

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