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Brit comic Elton to deliver ‘Baby’

Fine Line Features seriocomedy to lense in July

CANNES — Fine Line Features has signed Ben Elton, one of the U.K.’s leading comedy writers and performers, to write and direct his first movie.

Titled “Maybe Baby,” the $6 million project is a seriocomedy about a couple’s struggle to conceive a child.

The pic is scheduled to shoot in July, with comedy impresario Phil McIntyre producing. Fine Line is fully financing the pic in return for worldwide rights. No cast is yet attached.

Elton is simultaneously writing “Maybe Baby” as a screenplay and a novel.

Elton has been one of British comedy’s biggest names since he emerged at the forefront of the “alternative comedy” boom in the 1980s.

Primarily a writer, with a slew of successful novels, stage plays and TV sitcoms to his credit, he has also performed as a standup comic with his own top-rated BBC show.

He co-wrote the BBC series “The Young Ones” and collaborated on the classic Rowan Atkinson vehicle “Blackadder” with his friend Richard Curtis (“Notting Hill”).

The pic will be overseen by Ileen Maisel, Fine Line’s U.K.-based senior VP of production and acquisition, and Camela Galano, exec veep of Fine Line Intl., reporting to Fine Line president Mark Ordesky.