News of a
new Ben Stiller comedy these days is about as surprising as your next breath.
The guy simply will not stop, and because of the sheer volume of his work, he’s
more than able to weather a dud or two. You don’t care for a film of his? Or
three? Or the last six or so? Wait five minutes. I’m personally rather
indifferent to his work these days, but I try not complain because if someone
has to be prolific in mainstream comedy filmmaking, I rather it be a Stiller or
Ferrell rather than a Shawn Levy or Walt Becker-type. There’s product, and then
there’s soul-sapping, cynical excrement. Don’t fool yourselves into thinking
product is as bad as it gets.
latest, on the conceptual level, seems a good fit for the “product” label. He’s
picked up an ancient script called In Deep, which tells the madcap
story of a guy who gets a parking ticket, decides to fight it, and then makes
his legal situation increasingly worse through a series of events. The script
was actually written in the 80s, so just to make sure they don’t miss any stray
references to The Cold War or music cues from the likes of Information Society
or Was Not Was, they’re having a Page One rewrite done by the writer of Will
Smith’s The Pursuit of Happyness.
really notable thing about the whole endeavor is that the film’s going to be
directed by music video maverick and One Hour Photo-helmer Mark Romanek,
a man not exactly known for his comedy chops. But this looks to be the sort of
project that could be “directed” in somebody’s spare time as they’re shooting
another movie. Perhaps Romanek will test this theory by knocking this off
during breaks on the upcoming Benicio Del Toro-starrer the Wolf Man. He’ll have
time to ponder this as Stiller’s schedule is packed to the gills, so no start
date has been announced.