How many reboots of Eddie Murphy reboots does the world need? Enough to fuel the workload of Project X Entertainment, the team behind the upcoming Scream revival which has set its eyes on a piece of classic comedy IP: The Nutty Professor. Project X Entertainment’s James Vanderbilt, William Sherak, and Paul Neinstein are looking to develop another The Nutty Professor remake, the latest version of the classic Jerry Lewis comedy that Murphy rebooted in the ’90s.
The Jerry Lewis 1963 The Nutty Professor is considered a comedy classic — a widely acclaimed spoof on Robert Louis Stevenson’s 1886 novella Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Murphy’s 1996 remake added a few fat suits and a goofy slapstick twist. So what else can you do with The Nutty Professor? Based on Vanderbilt, Sherak, and Neinstein’s track record, I’m guessing a gritty reboot.
Deadline reports that Project X has landed the rights to The Nutty Professor with an intention to remake the classic comedy IP. No studio is currently attached, nor a writer or any other talent. Vanderbilt, who has penned scripts like The Rundown, Zodiac, and The Amazing Spider-Man, is just set to produce for now.
News of The Nutty Professor remake comes on the heels of Project X’s forthcoming relaunch of the Scream franchise, which is reuniting original cast members Courteney Cox and David Arquette to star in a sequel and soft reboot that is being directed by Ready Or Not duo Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett. It’s a bit of an odd leap to go from Scream straight to The Nutty Professor, but if there’s one thing the two properties have in common (apart from a sly satirical edge), it’s the “brand-name” recognition. Project X seems to be making a living by bringing back classic properties, which has become an increasingly popular tactic as blockbusters dominate what’s left of the box office and now streaming services.
The original Nutty Professor is widely acclaimed as a comedy classic from the late Lewis, and followed a nerdy professor who makes a potion that temporarily gives him the handsome, but abrasive, alter ego named Buddy Love. Universal’s 1996 reboot starred Murphy in a similar story, but in a fat suit, with Murphy also famously playing the professor’s five other family members (also in fat suits). The movie also spawned a sequel, The Nutty Professor II: The Klumps, which hit theaters in 2000. With The Nutty Professor, that makes the second recent property already once rebooted by Murphy to be remade once again. The first was the Dolittle, which Murphy headlined in the late ’90s and which Universal relaunched as a disastrous family comedy starring Robert Downey Jr. Dolittle is definitely not becoming a new franchise, so maybe Downey Jr. could don the suspenders and appear in this remake, too.
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