M. Night shopping next project; can he still perform double duty?

Shyamalan_boffo Writer/director M. Night Shyamalan may be close to nabbing a few high-profile actors for his next pic, according to Heat Vision.

“The Last Airbender” director has reportedly been shopping a new script to his friend and frequent collaborator Bruce Willis as well as thesps Bradley Cooper and Gwyneth Paltrow.

No details of the story are known at this point.

While “The Last Airbender” may pick up a few box office points this summer, Paramount’s 3D fantasy pic isn’t expected to transform Shyamalan’s once-promising career as writer/director.

After wowing auds with the Oscar-nommed “Sixth Sense” and following it up with box office smash Happening_boffo “Signs,” the high-profile multihyphenate has been in a considerable slump as of late, confusing fans and critics alike with movies like “Lady in the Water” and “The Happening (right),” which scored a paltry 18% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Still, M. Night Shyamalan (who turns 40 this year) is one of the town’s best when it comes to storytelling. “The Sixth Sense” has arguably one of the best movie plot twists ever while “Signs,” despite a weak third ACT, delivered some of the best family dynamics (Mel Gibson, Joaquin Phoenix) in a summer tentpole since Spielberg.

Let’s just hope Shyamalan kicks it up a notch on his next original vehicle. Otherwise, studios might ask him to ditch the typewriter and focus on being…well…a director.

Follow Stuart Oldham on Twitter. TwitterT_boffo

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