EXCLUSIVE: Darren Barnet, Harry Shum Jr., James Saito, Mikaela Hoover and Heather McMahan have rounded out the cast of Netflix’s romantic comedy Love Hard starring Jimmy O. Yang and Nina Dobrev. Barnet replaces Charles Melton, who fell off the film due to scheduling conflicts with his CW series Riverdale.
The spec, which Netflix acquired in August, was written by Danny Mackey and literary agent-turned screenwriter Rebecca Ewing. The film will be produced by McG and Mary Viola through their Wonderland banner.
Hernán Jiménez, who directed About Us and Elsewhere, will direct. The spec is described as When Harry Met Sally meets Roxanne, and follows an LA girl, unlucky in love, falls for an East Coast guy on a dating app and decides to surprise him for Christmas, only to discover that she’s been catfished. But the object of her affection actually lives in the same town, and the guy who duped her offers to set them up IF she pretends to be his own girlfriend for the holidays.
Steven Bello will exec produce.
Netflix had strong ties with Barnet already with their hit series Never Have I Ever which recently finished its second season of filming. He is repped by Buchwald, Untitled Entertainment and Felker Toczek Suddleson Abramson.
Shum is best know his role in Crazy Rich Asians and can be seen next in the upcoming All My Life. He is repped by Paradigm, Triniti Management, and Goodman, Genow, Schenkman, Smelkinson & Christopher.
Saito was most recently seen in the second season of Netflix’s Altered Carbon. He is repped by SMS Talent and PH Entertainment Group.
Hoover’s credits include Guest House and upcoming The Suicide Squad. She is repped by Vault Entertainment.
McMahan is repped by UTA and Artists Firsts.
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.