Dan Mazer's Rock Star Comedy 'Stiff'
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Andras Hamori’s H2O Motion Pictures is launching development on the rock-star comedy “Stiff” and the thriller “American Solo,” Variety has learned exclusively.

“Stiff” is based on a script from Dan Mazer, the longtime writing and producing partner of Sacha Baron Cohen. The project centers on an ’80s rock star who falls into a 30-year coma and wakes to find the world and his family have moved on without him.

“Stiff” will be directed by Michael Dowse, whose most recent film was the Daniel Radcliffe-Zoe Kazan comedy-drama “What If.” Dowse will produce with Hamori and Jodi Cahn will exec produce.

“Stiff” will begin production in the summer/fall in London.

H2O has also optioned the film rights for the German novel “American Solo” by Katja Eichinger, prior to its English-language publication. The thriller follows the story of a famous musician who kidnaps his neighbor’s beautiful young wife and locks her up in the panic room of his Hollywood Hills mansion.

Hamori will produce with Julia Rosenberg. Tamara Faith Berger (“Lie with Me”) is set to adapt the screenplay.

Variety reported on Feb. 12 that H2O Motion Pictures is producing the biopic “Herzl,” based on the life of political activist Theodore Herzl — one of the key players in the creation of the state of Israel — with a fall shoot planned. Peter Medak, whose credits include “The Ruling Class” and “Let Him Have It,” will direct from a script by Nicholas Kazan, who received an Oscar nomination for “Reversal of Fortune.”

Hamori’s producing credits include “Houdini,” “Owning Mahowny,” “The Samaritan,” David Cronenberg’s “Existenz” and “Max,” starring John Cusack as an art dealer and Noah Taylor as a young Adolf Hitler.

Mazer co-produced “Ali G Indahouse,” “Borat” and “Bruno.”

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