Between McSpaced and Terminator: The Return of the Terminator, McG seems dedicated to the cause of… if not outright evil, then whatever it is that’s the next rung under evil (I believe that would make him a Shriner). So it’s only natural that he’d land the rights to Josh Lieb’s book proposal for I Am a Genius of Unspeakable Evil and I Want to Be Your Class President. That’s right, Lieb’s novel isn’t even written yet. While this isn’t a terribly unusual occurrence, it is kind of odd for an unpublished author to sell his unpublished book to a major studio (in this instance, it’s Warner Brothers). Didn’t anyone see Wonder Boys? Finishing a novel can be a bitch.
Thankfully, Lieb isn’t a completely unknown quantity. In fact, he’s got a pretty bitchin’ track record: NewsRadio, The Simpsons and an Emmy win for The Daily Show (potential debit: he wrote the screenplay for Rob Schneider’s directorial debut, Big Stan). And I love the inventive concept for his soon-to-be-tapped-out novel. Per The Hollywood Reporter:
The premise centers on a chubby 13-year old boy who everybody assumes is the dumbest kid in the seventh grade. He really is an evil genius and the third-richest person on the planet, with a secret compound beneath his unsuspecting family’s modest suburban home. He hides his identity to keep himself safe from his enemies and because he can’t legally claim his empire until he turns 18.
To impress his “do-gooder” father, he makes a bid for class president. Being an evil genius, he runs a relentlessly dirty campaign.
I like that, according to the Reporter’s summary, the kid apparently has experience in staging Central American coups; it makes him sound a bit like Tracy Flick crossed with Henry Kissinger. This is all way too smart for McG, so I’m hoping he trusts Lieb’s instincts and stays the hell out of the scripting process (highly unlikely). Since Lieb will adapt his own novel, this project is probably a full year or so away from pre-production. Can’t wait for the book, though!
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