Key & Peele’ In New Line Deal For First Joint Film, About Purloined Feline ‘Keanu’
According to Deadline, Comedy Central series starsKey & Peele’sKeegan-Michael Key andJordan Peele have set their first joint film project at New Line. Titled Keanu, the film is set to start production next spring. The title refers not to the actor who played Neo in The Matrix, but rather to a kidnapped cat.Said Peele: “The movie should resonate with a large audience as almost everyone has had a house pet stolen by a street gang, right?”
The pair worked together on MAD TV and have seen their Comedy Central sketches develop a strong viral following. They have been circling numerous film projects for the past few months, including a Police Academy reboot, an untitled Judd Apatowfeature and a spinoff of Mr. Garvey, aka Substitute Teacher, a popular character on the show. They instead went with the story of friends who pose as drug dealers to infiltrate the criminal underworld, all to retrieve a stolen kitty. Peele wrote the script with Alex Rubens, a writer on the show as well as on Community.The project will shoot in Los Angeles by April and will be overseen by New Line SVP of production Michael Disco. New Line is in director talks Peter Atencio, who helms every episode of Key And Peele and is credited with giving those skits a cinematic aesthetic.
Both stars have worked separately on films — Key most recently appeared in The Lego Movieand Let’s Be Cops, while Peele did Wanderlust and Little Fockers— but this is their first joint film project. New Line President of Production Richard Brenner said the studio urged the duo to push toward a broad comedy with a larger footprint than the team’s early concepts. “There had been talk about doing it on the very cheap and independently,” Brener said. “But there’s not much comedy on TV. Sitcoms aren’t doing well. And everything they do is very funny — and accessible.”