It’s very common to see actors in Hollywood take a shot behind the camera, but you more often it see with long-experienced actors than the “younger generation” so to speak. That said Bryce Dallas Howard and Jonah Hill, who are both separately angling to make their feature-film directing debuts, are both a bit older than their on-screen roles would have you think (Dallas is about to 30, and Hill is just a few years behind her).
First up, Howard’s film is called The Originals and started as a screenplay she wrote and sold to her father’s company with Ron Howard possibly directing it, but it seems she’ll taking over directing duties herself. Speaking with Showbizz 411, Howard revealed that she would take on the film herself, and called it the “Breakfast Club of my generation.” Assuming the same synopsis from 2009 is accurate, the story is about a group in their 20s that travel back to NY when an important professor from their college years falls into a coma. Sounds more like another schmaltzy With Honors type film to me. Zoe Saldana was apparently in Howard’s mind as she wrote one of the roles, but there’s no firm word about other casting, or a start date.
Jonah Hill’s project is structured a bit differently, as he is coming in to direct a script written by Oren Uziel (who apparently wrote the Mortal Kombat web-short), that was purchased by Sony’s Matt Tolmach. It was Tolmach who also invoked The Breakfast club when describing the film, called The Kitchen Sink, to Deadline’s Mike Fleming. The film tells the story of an alien invasion combated by vampires, humans, and zombies in a loose alliance. The title is cute, and it’s wonderful that the film is self-aware from the start, but even self-aware zombie and vampire projects are fucking tired (with aliens likely soon to be tired along with them), so I hope this script truly earned its spot on the Black List of 2010. Hill has already jumped into the filmmaking side of Hollywood as he is co-writing 21 Jump Street (also for Sony) and did a little associate producing for Bruno. That said, he’s still untested behind the camera, so it remains to be seen if he’s got any directorial chops.
Both of these projects sound like they’re well on their way towards actually rolling, so perhaps we’ll be getting a little glimpse of the next generation of actors-turned-directors if either of these become worthwhile movies. There’s no better training for filmmaking than being on set as much as actors are, and these are both fine performers, so I’ve got my fingers crossed for good results for the both of them.
(Howard news via /Film)
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