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Sean Penn-Directed 'The Comedian' Will Be Kristen Wiig's Next Film; Reason For Not Doing 'Bridesmaids' Is To Avoid 'SNL' Curse

by Simon Dang
January 19, 2012 11:15 AM
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Yes, we know. It's hasn't even been 24 hours since we last weighed in on the whole "Kristen Wiig isn't doing a 'Bridesmaids' sequel" revelation, but in never-ending conversation, no one has really talked about what she's actually doing next. However, Vulture now report that while the actress definitely has no intention of doing a sequel to the 2011 box office hit, her only project for 2012 so far is joining Sean Penn and Robert De Niro for "The Comedian," with shooting planned to take place during her 'SNL' hiatus, begining in June.

Described by producer/co-scribe Art Linson as a "romantic comic drama," the movie has been in the works for quite some time. In its earliest stages, it was rumored to be a potential project for a Scorsese-De Niro reunion. Penn was later unveiled as the helmer, for what will be his first effort behind the camera since 2008's "Into The Wild" starring Emile Hirsch. In "The Comedian," Wiig is set to star as a redhead love interest for De Niro's has-been comedian, who is sentenced to community service after hitting a heckler in the head with a microphone.

As we touched upon in yesterday's story, Wiig's hesitance (possibly resistance) in doing a "Bridesmaids" sequel reportedly has to do with her enthusiasm to "try something else," with Vulture now adding that she's well aware of the "checkered track record of SNL comics and Hollywood’s tendency to pigeonhole them into profitable oblivion." One only has to look at the track record of folks like Molly Shannon, Chris Kattan, Tim Meadows, Julia Sweeny, Chris Farley and Al Franken to find all the evidence you need of former 'SNL' alums whose big screen flames fizzled very, very fast. And while "Bridesmaids" isn't based on a pre-existing sketch, Wiig's character is very much an archetype of a variety she plays on the show (neurotic, insecure) and so it's easy to see why she wants to prove herself versatile first.

"The Comedian" producer Linson, who co-scripted the film with Roastmaster General Jeffrey Ross, agrees, adding that he "doubts that it’s a business decision for her. She can write, she can act; she doesn’t just ‘do funny,’ so I’d think it’s more likely that her thinking is, ‘I want to play with all these toys until the battery runs out.’”

So, she's pretty much ditching a big fat paycheck to do a film with Penn and De Niro? Love it. And add to that roles in the upcoming "Friends With Kids" and "Imogene" and it looks like Wiig is eager to prove she's just not Annie Walker.

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  • Superzoom | January 29, 2013 10:44 AMReply

    Wiig as the romantic interest for De Niro? Grossssssss... He is literally twice her age. I know that movies are obsessed with May-December romances, but unless this movie addresses the complicating issues involved with such romances... Grossssss.

  • Theo | October 10, 2012 5:33 PMReply

    Nice. Greatly looking forward to it. Sean Penn is fast becoming one of my heroes. When he stepped behind the camera for Into the Wild, he really proved himself as more than a brilliant actor. Also, he was friends with the legendary Charles Bukowski, which pretty much says it all. Have a look at this preview for some interesting info. I felt pretty good after reading it. Actually, I can almost say that it made my afternoon.

  • I like Lamp | January 19, 2012 3:40 PMReply

    She's barely in Friends with Kids and she doesn't have any WOW moments, unfortunately. There's a breakdown scene, well a minor breakdown but it's more Jon Hamm who steals the show. I wish Friends with Kids explored the lives of the FRIENDS and not the main couple who are actually quite boring. That's where the film veers off and doesn't quite add up. It has promise, but you never see it play out. Wiig plays a more serious character in the film, but she's probably the least featured character and I didn't believe for a minute that she had kids and/or was a mother.

  • JoJo | January 19, 2012 11:20 AMReply

    "but in never-ending conversation, no one has really talked about what she's actually doing next."

    That's probably because no one other than you guys give a flying fuck what she's doing next.

  • Jack | January 19, 2012 4:38 PM

    No, JoJo is right - just like Soderbergh's retirement her involvement (or lack thereof) is non-news and nothing that important. Try finding something else to write about.

    And Into the Wild was 2007.......

  • Huffy | January 19, 2012 11:34 AM

    Someone's bitchy today. Did Wiig kick your puppy or something?

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