We read Diablo Cody's "Young Adult" script earlier this year and called it potentially her most "mature effort to date" (it also feels like a very personal work).
The Academy Award-winner's third screenplay centers on a divorced author of teen fiction who returns to her hometown to chase her ex-high school boyfriend, who’s now married with a kid. Mandate Pictures acquired the rights to the project in March, which Cody herself described the film as a story about a woman who is "stalking her high-school sweetheart. It has elements of humor, but it's pretty serious and fucked up."
Now Deadline -- who is on fire this week -- says Charlize Theron is attached to play the narcissistic '30-something in the film. The director? We wrote when we reviewed the script:
In some ways, it's somewhat not far off the tone of Robert Siegel's "Big Fan," which is humorous and dark, but obviously from a largely different female perspective (don't get too hung up on that, they're different things). Someone who does come to mind could be Jason Reitman, but he's obviously off doing his own thing now.
That something else we assumed was Reitman's adaptation of Joyce Maynard's "Labor Day," which has looked like the frontrunner for the director's next gig, but Deadline says that production on this film will start in November and if all goes according to plan (deal points and what not), Reitman will be in the directing chair; we didn't see that one coming.
This is a good move all around. "Young Adult," is pretty ugly script at times and the character is not at all sympathetic; everyone will be stretching here. The film has a dark, twisted tone and it really puts up a mirror to us 30-somethings who are still struggling to grow up. Pretty exciting news frankly. Reitman does seem a good fit for the material. If you want in-depth information, feel free to read our review. It's detailed, but not spoiler-ish. Don't forget producers of this film Brad William Henke ("Choke") is perfect for role of the protagonists crippled friend who's the only one not afraid to call her out on her shit.
Several studios are interested and we'd imagine one will bite soon enough, though if they stick to the script, this is a good, hard-to-swallow drama, not necessarily a fun money-maker or twee fest like, "Juno." The main trick of this piece will be to not make the protagonist too ugly, otherwise, who's going to watch this film? That said, you pretty-fy the whole thing and it will tumble apart. Reitman did a pretty decent job calibrating that kind of tone with George Clooney's asshole character in "Up In The Air," but this one will be a very tough act to balance.