'Chronicle' scribe to helm sexual identity pic for Big Beach
With nearly a dozen writing projects in development over multiple mediums and a hit movie under his belt, Max Landis is looking to tackle a new challenge: directing.The “Chronicle” scribe is set to make his feature directorial debut with “Me Him Her,” a comedy about sexual identity that will be produced and fully financed by Big Beach Films (“Safety Not Guaranteed”). Described as “‘Reality Bites’ on acid,” pic is a quarter-life-crisis tale set in Los Angeles that features three young leads, at least one of whom is struggling with their sexuality. Exploring sex, love and friendship in what Landis describes as “the weirdest, most surreal way possible,” the story ultimately emphasizes that conceptions of self should be flexible. “It’s totally insane! The devil is in it,” said Landis, who is currently casting the indie pic, though the ever-cheeky helmer has been keeping script details under wraps, using the logline from “Return of the Jedi” to throw loose-lipped agents off his scent. Peter Saraf and Marc Turtletaub will produce “Me Him Her,” which is expected to start production next spring or summer, depending on when Landis completes prior commitments. Big Beach has had success placing bets on first-time filmmakers, with Colin Trevorrow’s “Safety Not Guaranteed” grossing more than $4 million Stateside. Big Beach has produced the directorial debuts of established thesps Philip Seymour Hoffman (“Jack Goes Boating”) and Liev Schreiber (“Everything Is Illuminated”), as well as “Little Miss Sunshine” and “Sherrybaby,” both of which hailed from first-time filmmakers. Company is currently in post-production on Marc Turtletaub’s comedy “Gods Behaving Badly” and Jordan Vogt-Roberts’s teen pic “Toy’s House.” Landis’ sci-fi pic “Chronicle” grossed over $126 million worldwide for Twentieth Century Fox, which is also developing the scribe’s remake of “Frankenstein” with Paul McGuigan (“Push”) attached to direct, as Variety first reported. Landis recently sold TV pilot “Vigilant” to Fox and he’s also producing the adventure pic “Woogles” with Timur Bekmambetov. On the development side, Universal and Imagine are producing Landis’ script “Amnesty,” while RCR Pictures is seeking a director for his action-comedy “Good Time Gang.” Scribe is also writing a top-secret project for Disney. Landis is repped by WME, Circle of Confusion and Behr & Abramson.