Zahn, Covert lost in 'Wilderness'

Steve Zahn (“Sahara”) and Allen Covert (“50 First Dates”) are going to “Strange Wilderness,” toplining the comedy for Level 1 Entertainment and Happy Madison Prods.

Project, directed by first-time helmer Fred Wolf, centers on an effort to boost ratings of the ailing “Strange Wilderness” TV show via a pair of animal enthusiasts who head to the Andes in search of Bigfoot. Wolf (“Tommy Boy”) and Peter Gaulke (“Black Knight”) penned the script, which goes into production next week in Los Angeles.

Adam Sandler, Jack Giarraputo and Covert will produce; Level 1’s Bill Todman Jr., Edward Milstein and Paul Schwake and Glenn S. Gainor are exec producers.

Level 1 is financing with Fox distributing in the U.S., U.K. and Italy and Debbie Liebling overseeing for the studio. Summit Entertainment will act as sales rep for the rest of the world.

“Strange Wilderness” re-teams Level 1 and Happy Madison following “Grandma’s Boy,” starring Covert and scheduled for release by Fox in early 2006.

Zahn recently starred in Werner Herzog’s “Rescue Dawn” and will appear next in Disney’s “Chicken Little” and Fox’s “Bandidas.”

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