Melissa McCarthy & Ben Falcone to Direct Road Trip Comedy 'Tammy'
Bridesmaids star Melissa McCarthy is having a hell of a week. Her new movie Identity Thief hits theaters tomorrow, and just yesterday we wrote about how she and her husband, Ben Falcone, started a brand new production company and are developing three new projects as starring vehicles for the actress. Variety has just added one more piece of good news to the pile, as McCarthy and Falcone will make their directorial debut by co-directing a comedy they wrote called Tammy that has McCarthy set for another lead role. This project has been in the works since 2011, and, like Identity Thief, it's another road trip comedy. Read on!
The story follows a woman who loses her job and finds out that her husband has been cheating on her, so she decides to hit the road for a breath of fresh air. The only way to do that is in her grandmother's car, and when the foul-mouthed, drunken granny demands to come along, the film turns into a buddy road trip movie as the two make their way to Mount Rushmore. Ten bucks says Betty White plays the grandmother.
New Line had The Help director Tate Taylor lined up to direct Tammy, and The Princess Bride helmer Rob Reiner was reportedly courted for the director's chair too, but a deal couldn't be reached. Legendary television director Beth McCarthy-Miller ("Saturday Night Live") was actually the first choice to direct, but now McCarthy and Falcone will be able to take their baby all the way from inception to completion.
It's interesting to see a bunch of screenwriting duos making their directorial debuts these days: Nat Faxon and Jim Rash with The Way, Way Back; John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein with Vacation; and now McCarthy and Falcone. I wish them the best of luck, but we're really hoping the husband and wife team has come up with a better road trip screenplay than writer Craig Mazin's godawful effort on Identity Thief. No word yet on when exactly Tammy will go before cameras, but the report makes it clear that New Line didn't want the movie to be delayed and miss the chance of working with this comedy power couple, so expect it to get rolling sooner rather than later.