Payne to produce 'Cedar,' shooting begins October

Ed Helms will follow “The Hangover” with “Cedar Rapids,” an Alexander Payne-produced comedy to be directed by Miguel Arteta.

Shooting will begin in October, when Helms is on hiatus from NBC sitcom “The Office.”

Helms will play a sad-sack insurance agent who goes to an industry convention to try to save the jobs of his colleagues. Script was written by Phil Johnston, who developed it with Helms.

Several distributors are vying for the film, but the deal is expected to go to Fox Searchlight, which distributed the Payne-directed “Sideways.”

Payne is producing with Jim Burke and Jim Taylor through their Ad Hominem Enterprises banner. Helms is executive producer.

Arteta most recently completed comedy “Youth in Revolt.”

Helms is currently writing with script partner Jake Fleisher an untitled Civil War comedy for Warner Bros. Helms intends to star, and his “The Office” co-star Steve Carell is producing through his Warner Bros.-based Carousel banner.

Helms is repped by CAA and Principato Young.

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