Led by Jillian Bell (Godmothered), the remake was first announced back in 2016 as a gender-swapped, modern reimagining of Ron Howard’s 1984 romantic comedy. In the original report, Bell was set to play an updated version of Tom Hanks’ character, while the mermaid originated by Daryl Hannah would be played by Channing Tatum. Today, Deadline reported that the latest draft of the project will be written by Sarah Rothschild, who recently scribed Sleepover for Netflix; Rothschild takes over from Marja-Lewis Ryan, who wrote an earlier draft of the script. Howard and his partner Brian Grazer are set to produce a project that no doubt has sentimental meaning for them: the original film’s success led to the creation of their company Imagine in 1985.
It’s important to note that while Bell’s name was mentioned in today’s update, Tatum’s was not. Truly, we should have had this movie yesterday—and though it’s unclear if Tatum is still attached, with Magic Mike ending soon, we’d have zero objection to him replacing his rip-away pants with a merman tail.
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