Black comedy is based on true Texas town tale

Richard Linklater and Jack Black are set to reteam for the Castle Rock/Mandalay Vision black comedy “Bernie.”

The pair, who worked together on Black’s breakout role in “School of Rock,” will reunite for the pic, which will also star Shirley MacLaine.

Project is based on the 1998 Texas Monthly magazine article “Midnight in the Garden of East Texas” penned by Skip Hollandsworth, whose work has spawned a number of big and smallscreen projects, including the CBS telepic “Suburban Madness.” Linklater and Hollandsworth penned the script together.

Film is based on the story of Bernie Tiede, a mortician and community leader in a small east Texas town who strikes up an unlikely friendship with a wealthy widow (MacLaine) that leads to fatal consequences.

Lensing is scheduled to begin in October in Texas. A open casting call held in Texarkana, Texas, on Saturday called for townspeople to appear in the film, and Linklater told a local news site he was looking for “funny and interesting folks” to fill lots of small parts in the movie, mostly for people over 40.

Mandalay Vision’s Celine Rattray will produce alongside Castle Rock’s Martin Shafer and Liz Glotzer. Ginger Sledge will also produce.

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