David Dobkin

The Change-Up

Many people don’t realize this because The Change-Up was something of a flop upon its release in 2011, but the Ryan Reynolds/Jason Bateman body swap movie has actually developed an intense cult following since it was released for home viewers. There’s something about the idea of a parent switching lives — even only for a few days — with a single, good looking childless guy that really struck a nerve in the parenting community. The movie added another $20M in home market sales and those DVDs and Blu Rays have been circulating from one family to another for nearly three years. It is, after all, one of the rare R-rated body swap movies, and it is at times filthy in the purest Apatowian sense. Capitalizing on the success of the movie in the home market, Universal finally released a Special Edition Blu Ray complete with director’s commentary last month, so for the first time, we’re finally learning about some of the behind-the-scenes drama on the film. Here’s the 25 coolest things we found out from the commentary track, which featured stars Jason Bateman, Leslie Mann, Ryan Reynolds, and director David Dobkin.

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Lovelace

As much as we all might mock James Franco for his seemingly never-ending work flow of wackiness – movies, television, dunder-headed adaptations of classic novels, soap operas, books, art installations, screaming about shit, and so on and so forth – the multi-hyphenate certainly seems to be interested in mixing things up in a big way. He also appears to have a hefty interest in classic Hollywood and offbeat stories from that era (this is, after all, a guy who directed a biopic on Sal Mineo), so why not give him a meaty role in an era-appropriate film that he can excel it, if only because he’s done it before? Variety reports that director David Dobkin (Wedding Crashers) is now on board to direct Warner Bros.’ long-gestating biopic about Hugh Hefner, Playboy founder, raconteur, and major man about town. While Dobkin seems like a bit of a strange fit – he also directed The Change-Up – the director has recently taken a turn into the dramatic with the upcoming The Judge, and the film will be bolstered by a screenplay by Peter Morgan, who has penned such historically-set films as Rush and Frost/Nixon. A mix of high and low? Comedy and drama? How could Franco not be at the top their list?

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Once upon a time Warner Bros. was pretty gung-ho about putting together a new version of the King Arthur story. They tried to develop an Excalibur remake with director Bryan Singer, they paired Guy Ritchie up with Trainspotting writer John Hodge for another take, and they bought David Dobkin’s script Arthur & Lancelot for a cool $2m. Dobkin’s version came pretty close to getting made, and had Game of Thrones’ Kit Harington all ready to play Arthur and The Killings’ Joel Kinnaman set to be Lancelot, but ultimately things fell apart. In trying economic times, the film’s proposed $130m budget was deemed just too much to risk, especially with a couple of actors who hadn’t been proven on the big screen stuck in the lead roles. After the deal with Warner fell apart, Dobkin was free to once again shop his script around town, but nothing much came of his efforts. That’s reportedly changed, however. According to Deadline Malahide, Colin Farrell is now interested in the film, which gives it considerably more star power than it ever had before, and which has rekindled interest on the part of  Warner Bros. If the project gets back on track Farrell would be playing Lancelot, which is considered to likely be the breakout role of the film. There’s no word on who they would be looking at to play Arthur (get Brendan Gleeson!), but Deadline does claim to have knowledge that Gary Oldman will be re-approached to play Merlin, a role he initially […]

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According to Variety, the John Francis Daley and Jonathan M. Goldstein writing team whose been crafting the words behind a remake of National Lampoon’s Vacation are now in talks to direct the film. It would be the first feature directing job for both, even though no amount of movies can make Daley not the guy from Freak and Geeks. It’s being produced by David Dobkin over at New Line, and at the very least involves the high concept of good old Rusty Griswold takes his loving family out on the road. Who knows what adventures they’ll get into from there. So why pick two newcomers to the directing game? Because they have a strong short film resume. Their latest is Audio Tour which features Will Forte as a man who leaves a museum with his tour guiding headphones still on and learns way too much about the world around him. Check it out for yourself:

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Remember that time when Jack the Giant Killer was scheduled to hit theaters in the summer of 2012? It was a simpler, happier time when the internet wasn’t imploding, you could go out dancing safely with your best girl, and strangers offering bizarre beans on the side of the road were foodie hipsters wanting people to try organic lentils. Not anymore. Now chaos reigns as Warners has pushed Bryan Singer’s forthcoming flick from a coveted in mid-June all the way to March 22, 2013. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Rock of Ages has been shifted forward to fill the slot. In its original position, its only competition was the Adam Sandler/Andy Samberg movie Donny’s Kid. In its new slot, it faces the DreamWorks animated comedy The Croods, the Tom Hanks-starring Somali pirate movie Captain Phillips, and whatever else studios decide to toss there in the coming months. So what happened? Either confidence wasn’t high in the film in its current, crappy CGI form. Or, it’s a sideline casualty of the decision to pump the breaks on the David Dobkin project Arthur & Lancelot which was scheduled for March 15, 2013. Dobkin is also a producer on Jack. Removing it from the schedule left Warners with no movie to release in March at all. At any rate, it’s probably good that the film gets some more time to simmer because the trailer looked atrocious. Plus, if you don’t want to wait, you can always watch the original Jack the Giant Killer […]

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Press conferences can be many things – informative, entertaining, boring, long, short, disastrous, fluffy, bullshit, and sometimes even honest. Happily, sitting in on the junket for The Change-Up, I found this press conference to be three of my favorites: entertaining, brief, and honest. With a movie like The Change-Up, you’re really going to come across any ground breaking information – after all, it’s just a comedy. Not to belittle comedies or anything, but it’s not a gigantic science fiction beast, a gigantic budgeted translation of a famed comic-book, nor is it a gigantic spectacle of shit blowing up. If you’re looking for brilliant insight into the film-making process, you’re barking up the wrong tree. However, if you want to hear me talk about who the most attractive men in the room where, Leslie Mann’s breasts, and David Dobkin’s color pallete, well keep on readin’ on.

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr heads into a lab to liberate some apes, but they rise up, beat him down and fling their poo all over him. He washes up and heads home to his family, secretly longing for the swinging lifestyle of fellow FSR staffers like Neil Miller, Robert Fure and Rob Hunter. But since he doesn’t get a chance to pee in a fountain with any of them, he doesn’t get a chance to switch bodies with them, a la The Change-Up. This is probably a good thing because few people can take the awesomessness of his body.

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It’s a tale as old as time and as stale as those left-over everything bagels you brought home from the office two Fridays ago. Two humans living organisms, as different as night and day, cats and dogs, pee pee and poo poo, by some magical occurence swap bodies. Or minds. Or something. With literally dozens of iterations over the years, one would correctly wonder what was left to explore in the body swap comedy. As it turns out, there is, or was, at least one viable and comedic avenue left unexplored: the R-Rating. Make no mistake, The Change-Up strives to be R-Rated. Perhaps falling short of the hard R of The Hangover (John Lucas & Scott Moore wrote both), director David Dobkin peppers the screen with breasts (more on those later), urination scenes, two instances of diarrhea, a thumb in the asshole, and plenty of other inappropriate gags and the endangerment of children.

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Way back in 2009 there was supposed to be a movie called Neighborhood Watch starring Will Ferrel and directed by Wedding Crashers’ David Dobkin, but talent clashed with studio to the point that it didn’t ever happen. Fox isn’t a studio to just lie down and die however. I guess somebody in charge must really like the project, because a whole new wave of talent has been tossed at the script. Things didn’t work out with Ferrell and Dobkin creatively, but recently Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg have written a new draft of the script. You might have heard of them, they did stuff like Superbad and Pineapple Express. Oh yeah, and Rogen has acted in so many movies over the last five years that you’re probably sick of him. But don’t worry, Rogen isn’t the new guy rumored to star. Now that there’s a spiffy new version of the script written by top talent comedy mega-star Ben Stiller is being courted to star in the film. Oh. His character would be a city boy who ends up moving to the suburbs and joining the neighborhood watch. What might seem like a pretty boring gig proves to be nothing of the sort when he finds himself right in the middle of some sort of extraterrestrial cover-up. Sounds goofy, so it’s probably going to need a goofy guy to direct.

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By the end of 2010, fans will see Olivia Wilde on House, in theaters for The Next Three Days and Tron: Legacy, and will hear more about her role in Cowboys and Aliens. She’s going to be everywhere, and that’s not even counting television appearances, magazine photo shoots, and co-starring roles in dreams. Now, she’ll appear alongside Jason Bateman and Ryan Reynolds for The Change Up – a film that sees uptight Bateman switch bodies with slacker Reynolds for the record-breaking 2,000th body changing movie. The best possible outcome? A twist ending where Batemen finds himself permanently stuck inside Jodie Foster’s body.

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Just after Guillermo Del Toro exited the director’s chair of The Hobbit, we took to the streets with our own list of 7 Directors Who Should Take Over. Among them was Peter Jackson — writer, producer and gatekeeper of all things Lord of the Rings. He is perhaps the easiest choice to take the reigns, having been on the project from day one co-writing the script with Del Toro. In fact, Jackson stepping up might be one of the only sure-fire ways to give fans what they want — a pair of actual Hobbit movies.

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The “buddy comedy in a world of sci-fi and action” might be closer to pre-production than we previously thought.

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Damn. Well, maybe now Tom Hanks and Corey Feldman will take the hint and make The Burbs II, so we can finally all sleep easier.

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Will Ferrell is currently in talks to take the lead in a new David Dobkin directed comedy called Neighborhood Watch, which sounds a lot like a remake of the great Tom Hanks comedy The ‘burbs if you ask me.

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As if it were gift wrapped and sent with chocolates, this story win’s this week’s award for most pun-prone news item. Apparently The Flash movie isn’t moving so fast…

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If you’re going to suffer through Fred Claus, take our advice and tie one on as tight as a Christmas bow. You might just emerge with your sanity.

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Wedding Crashers director David Dobkin has signed on to helm the solo project for The Flash. Will there be gratuitous sex involved?

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published: 04.17.2014
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published: 04.17.2014
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published: 04.17.2014
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published: 04.16.2014
B+

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