Why are they doing it? Because they can.
Paramount Pictures is readying a remake of 1975’s “The Stepford Wives,” negotiating with helmer Frank Oz to direct a script from Paul Rudnick.
The original pic was adapted by William Goldman from the Ira Levin novel of the same name and released by Columbia Pictures. The current version is being produced by Par-based Scott Rudin.
For those under the age of 30: “Stepford” centered on those happy brides who a little too cheerfully go about their housework — cleaning, doing laundry, cooking gourmet meals — to please their husbands. But a woman discovers her hamlet’s wives have been replaced with cyborgs — and that her husband has plans to replace her as well.
Rudnick, a longtime Rudin collaborator on pics including “In & Out” and “Addams Family Values” is that rare scribe who has also made a name for himself in legit theater, with social commentary like the Off Broadway laffers “The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told” and Broadway’s “Jeffrey,” which also became a pic of the same name. Insiders say his take on the classic “Stepford” pic will keep the macabre tone but still be a comedy.
Rudnick most recently penned “Marci X” for Rudin, a Lisa Kudrow starrer about a Jewish-American princess who inherits a hardcore hip-hop label and must rein in its most controversial gangsta rap artists.
Oz last helmed “The Score,” also for Paramount, which starred Edward Norton, Robert De Niro and Marlon Brando, but is no stranger to Rudnick’s pen: He also helmed the scribe’s “In & Out” in 1997.
Both Oz and Rudnick are being repped in the deal by Creative Artists Agency.