Neither deal is done, and Carell’s involvement is more likely than Poulter’s according to insiders, but both actors have ties to Plan B, having recently worked with the company on The Big Short and War Machine, respectively.
Felix van Groeningen (The Broken Circle Breakdown) is directing Beautiful Boy from a script by Luke Davies (Lion), who adapted David Sheff’s memoir “Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction” as well as his son Nic Sheff’s memoir “Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines.”
Beautiful Boy is told through the eyes of a father whose son is addicted to meth and struggling to find recovery.
Pitt will produce the film, likely with his Plan B partners Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner. The company recently produced Golden Globe winner and Oscar hopeful Moonlight.
Cameron Crowe was previously attached to direct the project, and was at one point courting Mark Wahlberg to star as David Sheff.
Van Groeningen’s Belgian film The Broken Circle Breakdown earned a foreign language Oscar nomination and put the director on Hollywood’s radar. Meanwhile, Davies knows a thing or two about addiction, having written the 2006 Heath Ledger drama Candy, which was based on his own novel “Candy: A Novel of Love and Addiction.”
Carell, who earned an Oscar nomination for his unrecognizable turn in Foxcatcher, is coming off the Oscar-nominated drama The Big Short and Woody Allen’s Cafe Society. He recently wrapped Richard Linklater’s Last Flag Flying with Laurence Fishburne, and next stars as tennis pro Bobby Riggs opposite Emma Stone’s Billie Jean King in Fox Searchlight’s Battle of the Sexes. Carell is also set to return as the voice of Gru in Despicable Me 3.
Carell’s upcoming projects include Robert Zemeckis’ feature adaptation of the acclaimed documentary Marwencol and the Minecraft movie that It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia star Rob McElhenney is directing for Warner Bros. He’s represented by WME and Media Four.
Poulter has established himself as one of Hollywood’s most talented young actors with turns in The Revenant, The Maze Runner and We’re the Millers. He’ll soon be seen opposite Pitt in Plan B’s Netflix movie War Machine, as well as in Kathryn Bigelow’s untitled Detroit movie. He’s repped by WME and Hamilton Hodell.
Jeff Sneider | Editor-in-Chief