EXCLUSIVE: Universal Pictures has acquired the Dave Barry and Alan Zweibel novel Lunatics, with Steve Carell attached to star. The film will be produced by Scott Stuber and Pam Abdy of Stuber Pictures and Carell and his Carousel partners Vance DeGeneres and Charlie Hartsock.
The Barry-Zweibel collaboration is two New Jersey soccer dads whose minor feud escalates to create worldwide consequences, and leave them running for their lives. Barry and Zweibel will adapt their novel, which will be published by Putnam in January. Carell will play Philip Horkman, the owner of a pet store who refs kids soccer games on Sundays, and there he meets an irate soccer dad who triggers the misadventures. Carell, who’s repped by WME and Media Four, will start filming Burt Wonderstone with Jim Carrey in January for New Line and Warner Bros. Zweibel, who’s writing an HBO comedy pilot vehicle for Penny Marshall, was repped by Paradigm, and CAA reps Barry. Their lit agent is Writer’s House.
Stuber is readying the Denzel Washington-Ryan Reynolds drama Safe House, and also wrapped Battleship, and the Seth MacFarlane-directed Ted and is currently producing the Keanu Reeves-starrer 47 Ronin.