On the hunt for ‘Monster’

'King' James rules over Sony's family film

Sony Pictures Entertainment has set Kevin James to star in “Monster Hunter,” a big-scale live-action family adventure being written by Robert L. Baird and Daniel Gerson, scripters of “Monsters, Inc.” and “Curious George.”

Overbrook Entertainment partners Will Smith and James Lassiter will produce the pic, which is an outgrowth of the relationship they and the studio developed with James when he starred alongside Smith in the Overbrook-produced Columbia Pictures hit “Hitch.”

The film will be the first big star vehicle for James when he completes his eighth and final season of the hit CBS sitcom “King of Queens.”

He’ll play a child psychologist who can actually see the monsters that torment kids from closets and under beds. He uses that skill to vanquish the beasts until he meets a particularly nasty one.

“Since the moment we wrapped ‘Hitch,’ we’ve been looking for the right way to get back in business with this team,” said Col co-prexy of production Doug Belgrad, who’ll oversee the project with Jonathan Kadin.

Once he has completed his series run, the standup comic-turned TV star will concentrate on making movies, including the Neal Moritz-produced Disney comedy “Field Trip” and the Bob Cooper-produced “Man in Uniform” at New Line.

James will next be seen in the comedy “Grilled,” and his voice will be heard in the upcoming animated features “Monster House” and “The Barnyard.”

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