Universal taps actor to topline new comedy

Universal Pictures has set Jim Carrey to star in “Sober Buddies,” a comedy Carrey will produce with Stuber/Parent’s Scott Stuber and Mary Parent and Michael Peyser.

Andrew Kurtzman is writing the script, about a hard-partying software exec assigned a court-appointed Sober Buddy to keep him under control during a critical business trip to Las Vegas. A perfect plan falls apart when the Sober Buddy (Carrey) falls off the wagon.

Kurtzman, who’s writing the DreamWorks pic “Mr. Peabody and Sherman” based on the Jay Ward-created cartoon characters, hatched the project as a pitch with Principal Entertainment’s Danny Sherman, who will be exec producer. They brought it to Carrey, who then took it to Stuber. Stuber set it at Universal under the duo’s overall deal at the studio.

Carrey hasn’t chosen his next film but is zeroing in on the two or three roles he’ll take on before a possible strike next June. The candidates: the title character in the Tim Burton-directed “Ripley’s Believe It or Not!” at Paramount; a gay prison escapee in the dark indie comedy “I Love You Phillip Morris,” written and directed by the “Bad Santa” team of Glenn Ficarra and John Requa; and a reluctant nursemaid to his ailing wife and her family in the Fox comedy “Me Time,” scripted by Ian Roberts and Jay Martel.

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