It’s not often that movies are made concerning figures from Hollywood’s classic era (and I presume such classic personalities will be sent up in next month’s Coens‘ joint “Hail, Caesar!”), but a long brewing project regarding two of cinema’s classic comedians is now moving forward.
Deadline reports that Steve Coogan and John C. Reilly are teaming up for “Stan & Ollie,” a movie about, you guessed it, Laurel & Hardy. Jon S. Baird (“Filth”) is set direct the Jeff Pope (“Philomena”) penned tale that will focus on Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy‘s farewell tour of Britain in 1953, where attendance was low and their partnership was waning. “It’s really a love story between two guys who come to realize they can’t live without each other. It’s a really, really beautiful tale,” Baird said about the project a couple of years back. It’s certainly hard to argue with such great casting.
Meanwhile, Coogan has also boarded Oren Moverman‘s “The Dinner.” He joins Richard Gere, Laura Linney, Rebecca Hall and Chloë Sevigny in a project once slated to be Cate Blanchett‘s directorial debut and which is based on the novel by Herman Koch. Penned by Moverman, the story kicks off as Paul and Claire Lohman (Coogan, Linney) get ready for a dinner with Paul’s politician brother Stan (Gere) and his wife Barbara (Hall). Tensions already exist between the two brothers: Stan is a smooth-talking celebrity who is the favorite to win a governor’s race, while the unemployed Paul has a chip on his shoulder. But as an evening in a chic restaurant progresses, dark secrets emerge about their respective children —a monstrous crime has been committed by the Lohman kids, and the two couples are divided about how to handle the situation. Production begins this week.