Mike Fleming

BREAKING: Robert Schwentke has locked a deal to direct R.I.P.D., the Universal  Pictures supernatural-themed action film that will star Ryan Reynolds. Schwentke, who is creating buzz for the upcoming Bruce Willis-Helen Mirren-starrer Red, will start shooting late next summer, when Reynolds has carved out a slot in his busy dance card. He is shooting The Change Up, followed by Safe House, and then, hopefully, R.I.P.D.

Based on a Peter Lenkov comic published by Dark Horse, R.I.P.D. is a law enforcement division staffed by dead guys. Reynolds plays a cop who is killed in the line of duty and enlists for the chance to stop his killer. He’s partnered with a long dead gunslinger. Script was written by Clash of the Titans scribes Phil Hay and Matt Manfredi, the duo that also scripted Staycation for Warner Bros and The Boys for Sony. Schwentke is separately attached to direct an adaptation of Robert Ludlum’s The Osterman Weekend for Summit Entertainment, which just set Jesse Wigutow for a rewrite. Schwentke is also attached to direct an adaptation of the Robert Kurson novel Shadow Divers at Fox 2000.

Original’s Neal Moritz and Dark Horse’s Mike Richardson are producing R.I.P.D., with David Dobkin exec producer. Schwentke’s repped by CAA and Jennifer Killoran.