by: Madison Barnes
Recent reports indicate that Jason Segel is attached to star in DOGS OF BABEL as the production looks for a new director. The film has been through development hell over the last couple years, and following some high-profile talent leaving the project, it seems to be back on track. Heyday Films and Sekret Agent Productions are producing, and it’s currently a top priority for the producers.
The film was set to star Steve Carell and be directed by John Carney back in 2011, but development has stalled drastically since then. It’s totally understandable that differing views may have arisen on the film, seeing as it’s a drama about a linguistics professor’s wife and her attempt to committ suicide. Sometimes viewed as a dark comedy and sometimes as a straight drama, consensus must have been hard to find, and the specific tone was probably something that was frequently discussed. Segel’s attachment to the project is a bit curious, as it pins another funny man to the would-be “drama” making us wonder what exactly was decided between producers.
The story is based off a 2003 novel by Carolyn Parkhurst about a linguistics professor who loses his wife after she fatally falls from a backyard tree. The only witness is the family dog, whom the professor tries to teach to communicate. Although getting his dog to talk is (of course) impossible, he indirectly finds evidence of his wife’s manic-depressive tendencies and that she most likely tried to kill herself. It’s gripping content would make it a favorite on the festival circuit and may even be able to generate some Oscar buzz if done tastefully.
Jamie Linden is working on the current version of the script. David Heyman, Corey May, and Dooma Wendschuh are producing, along with Jeff Clifford executive producing for Heyday.
Stay glued to the Tracking Board for all the updates on the dramatic project, and how they decide to move forward.