Dan Fogler to portray comic Kinison in biopic

HBO launched comic Sam Kinison’s star, and now the pay web will memorialize his life and death with “Brother Sam,” a film Tom Shadyac will direct.

Dan Fogler will play the manic comic.

Basis for the telepic is “Brother Sam: The Short, Spectacular Life of Sam Kinison,” a memoir written by his brother and manager, Bill Kinison, and Steve Delsohn. A new script has been written by Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini, the writer-directors of “American Splendor.”

David Permut is producing in a co-production of Permut Presentations and Shadyac’s Shady Acres. Steve Longi is co-producer and Bill Kinison is exec producer.

Shadyac and Permut spent eight years trying to get the project made as a feature at Universal Pictures, but the project stalled and seems a better fit at HBO, which just set up a biopic of Washington Post publisher Katharine Graham for Laura Linney to star in and Robert Benton to direct, based on a Joan Didion script.

Kinison’s star was launched by an appearance on HBO’s Rodney Dangerfield-hosted “Young Comedians” special in 1984. Fogler is the Tony-winning star of “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” who transitioned to features with “Balls of Fury.”ends

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