Diesel set to star in 'Rules'

Vin Diesel, romantic?

Touchstone Pictures has acquired “Player’s Rules,” a romantic comedy pitch that Ron Bass and Jen Smolka will script as a star vehicle for Diesel, who’ll produce via his One Race Films banner.

Best known for macho fare like “XXX” and “The Fast and the Furious,” Diesel has slowly diversified into family fare (“The Pacifier”) and drama (“Find Me Guilty”). This romantic comedy is his first.

Bass went to Diesel’s house to pitch him a drama idea. During the meeting, Diesel sparked more to a romantic comedy, a Bass specialty. With Bass’ new writing partner Smolka, they hatched “Player’s Rules” and sold it in the room to Touchstone. They describe it as a “unique take in the ongoing war between men and women.”

Diesel doesn’t have his next movie lined up but is trying to mobilize “Hannibal,” in which he’d direct and play the 3rd century B.C. Carthaginian general who rode an elephant across the Alps with 100,000 troops to attack Rome. Diesel now controls the rights and is trying to arrange financing.

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