EXCLUSIVE: John Cena, Search Party‘s Meredith Hagner and Lil Rel Howery are attached to lead the comedy film Vacation Friends from 20th Century Fox and Hulu. Clay Tarver, an executive producer of HBO’s Silicon Valley, will helm the film as his first feature directorial outing.
Todd Garner is producing the project under his Broken Road Productions label, which produced the recently released family comedy Playing with Fire, which starred Cena.
Vacation Friends is about a straight-laced couple that has fun with a rowdy couple on vacation in Mexico. When they return to the States, they discover that the crazy couple they met in Mexico followed them back home.
This project is a long time in the making as Fox had acquired the spec script from co-writing brothers Tom Mullen and Tim Mullen in a near seven-figure deal back in 2014. The initial plan was for Steve Pink to direct and then-married couple Chris Pratt and Anna Faris to star. At one point, Ice Cube was attached to star as well.
Cena’s upcoming film slate includes Fast & Furious 9, The Suicide Squad, Project X-Traction opposite Jackie Chan. Hagner, who recently appeared in Ike
Barenholtz’s The Oath and the James Gunn-produced film Brightburn with Elizabeth Banks, will appear in Dummy, a serialized, movie-length project for Quibi. Howery is coming off the release of his HBO comedy special Lil Rel Howery: Live in Crenshaw and has a slew of films coming out next year including Universal’s The Photograph, Free Guy with Ryan Reynolds, Deep Water with Ben Affleck and Fatherhood opposite Kevin Hart.
Tarver, who co-wrote the 2001 Paul Walker-starring thriller Joy Ride with JJ Abrams, is repped by Artists First and WME.
Cena is repped by ICM Partners, Hagner by UTA and Suskin Management and Howery by UTA and Fourth Wall Management.