EXCLUSIVE: Here’s a hot little property hitting the market. 20th Century Fox has put in turnaround its adaptation of the Judith Viorst children’s book Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, the one that has Steve Carell attached to star and The Kids Are All Right writer-director Lisa Cholodenko helming a script she wrote with Rob Lieber. Carell boarded the project last April. Shawn Levy’s 21 Laps is producing.
The film is far along the development track, and it will be shopped immediately with those participants I hear. It is live-action, and I understand that Fox was uncomfortable with the budget. Carell is getting ready to star for Moneyball’s Bennett Miller in Foxcatcher, the story of paranoid schizophrenic heir John du Pont, who build a wrestling camp and wound up killing Olympic grappler Dave Schultz. In Alexander, Carell is aboard to play the boy’s father in a tale that is one of the more entertaining and humorous of the yarns you read endlessly to your kids at night. Alexander starts a wretched day with the realization that the gum he fell asleep chewing is now hopelessly tangled in his hair, and things get worse from there, to the point he threatens to chuck it all and move to Australia. It might not fit into Fox’s slate, but I would be shocked if another studio doesn’t step in and make the film, with the book’s pedigree and the talent taking part.