BREAKING: Paramount Pictures has signed Johnny Knoxville and his Hello Junior banner to an exclusive 2-year first-look deal. This comes after Deadline revealed that he was brought in to voice Leonardo in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and it follows a long string of hits with the studio including the Jackass films and Bad Grandpa. Those Jackass films have earned $336 million globally, and Bad Grandpa did just over $150 million worldwide.
With the possible exception of Jackie Chan (who does all his own stunts), no actor has sacrificed his body and absorbed more onscreen punishment than Knoxville did in those Jackass films. Chan never took a paintball shot or numerous other projectile objects to the nutsack, which I recall seeing Knoxville do so often, in the name of comedy. Or been upended by a raging, charging bull, or been knocked unconscious by the over-sized boxer known as Butterbean in a clothing store. I could go on, but I think I’ve made the point that no one can begrudge Knoxville this good fortune as he limps into his new office on the Par lot. Let’s hope the deal includes medical.
“Johnny is hilarious,” said Brad Grey, Chairman & CEO of Paramount Pictures. “I have known him for many years now, and I am constantly impressed and in awe of his unwavering commitment to ensure audiences around the world have a great time at the movies.”
Knoxville has hired Bad Grandpa producer Derek Freda to be president of Hello Junior. As an actor, Knoxville is next expected to star in the Jeremy Garelick-directed Universal and Imagine Entertainment comedy Sick Day.
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Said Par Film Group prexy Adam Goodman: “Johnny has literally put life and limb on the line to create the kind of groundbreaking comedies that audiences the world over flock to in greater and greater numbers. With Bad Grandpa, we saw his undying commitment to great storytelling go beyond what audiences had seen before with a more narrative style that also showcased his incredible comedic abilities. As a vital member of the Paramount family for many years now, to see him continue to evolve as a producer and actor is especially exciting and we are thrilled he will be making his home here for years to come.”
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