Thesp to also star in comedy opposite Johnny Knoxville

Renee Zellweger is set to make her directorial debut with “4 1/2 Minutes,” a comedy in which she’ll star opposite Johnny Knoxville.

Kevin FrakesPalmStar Media Capital will finance the pic, which K5 International will begin introducing to buyers at Toronto. CAA is handling North American rights.

Written by Anthony Tambakis (“Warrior”) and based on the life and comedy of standup comedian Dov Davidoff, who shares story credit, “4 1/2 Minutes” follows Jimmy Bennett (Knoxville), a commitment-phobic trainwreck of a comedian whose life is falling apart when he takes a job looking after the genius son of single mom P.J. Andersen (Zellweger).

Story is set in the New York City standup comedy world, and production is skedded to start in Gotham in February.

Frakes will produce for PalmStar along with Zellweger and Tambakis through their All Together Now banner. Raj Brinder Singh will exec produce.

Project marks the third collaboration for Zellweger and Tambakis, who recently received a pilot order for their original series “Cinn-amon Girl.” Zellweger will also star in the upcoming Broadway adaptation of “The Hustler,” which “Warrior” helmer Gavin O’Connor will direct from Tambakis’ script.

“It´s great to be working with Renee as a partner on this project,” said K5′s co-founders Oliver Simon and Daniel Baur. “It’s a wonderful opportunity to support her as she moves into her first directing role.”

“Renee Zellweger is unique. She’s one of the very finest and highest-profile comic actresses working today but she has an amazing range too and, as this film and the actor/director role she is taking on it will show, she is also is one of the industry’s most versatile and brightest talents,” added K5 partner Carl Clifton, who handles sales and marketing.

Frakes has already worked with K5 in providing essential finance through his company PalmStar Media Capital for Paul Walker starrer “Vehicle 19″ and Bille August’s upcoming “Night Train to Lisbon.”

In 2009, K5 International acquired a stake in PalmStar Entertainment and entered into a representation deal.

CAA reps Zellweger and Knoxville, who are managed by John Carrabino Management and 3 Arts Entertainment, respectively.

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