Helmer pats Walden pets

Walden Media is keeping its focus on the family aud, tapping Mark Dindal to helm live-action family comedy “Housebroken.”

Michael De Luca is producing.

“Housebroken” will center around a newly married couple’s talking pets, who must adjust to living together under one roof. Walden is looking for a scribe to work with Dindal (“Chicken Little”) on the script, originally penned by Adam Sztykiel.

Sean Perrone and Aaron Kaplan are exec producing.

Dindal’s credits include “The Emperor’s New Groove.” De Luca is now in production on “Priest” for Screen Gems and is developing “The Social Network,” which chronicles the creation of Facebook.

Deal for “Housebroken” comes with Walden continuing to emphasize family comedies. Company moved toward films with more commercial appeal after Michael Bostick came onboard as co-CEO with Cary Granat last year. Granat subsequently departed Walden (Daily Variety, Nov. 17).

Eight-year-old Walden has seen mixed results from its strategy of adapting youth-market books. Its biggest success to date remains 2005’s “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe,” with a global gross topping $700 million.

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