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Johnny Depp Confirmed to Star in Comedy ‘King of the Jungle’

Variety logo Variety 5/14/2017 Leo Barraclough
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Johnny Depp is set to star in “King of the Jungle,” a dark comedy to be directed by Glenn Ficarra and John Requa from a script by Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski, it was confirmed Sunday. IMR International is handling foreign sales at Cannes with CAA repping domestic rights.

The pic is based on a true story first published in Condé Nast’s Wired magazine by Joshua Davis. The film is from Condé Nast Entertainment, Zaftig Films, MadRiver Pictures, and Epic Entertainment.

Based on the Wired article “John McAfee’s Last Stand,” the film tells the true story of tech magnate John McAfee, creator of the McAfee Antivirus software, who cashed-in his fortune, left civilization, and moved to the jungle in Belize. There, he set-up a “Colonel Kurtz-like compound of guns, sex and madness,” according to a statement. In the film, a Wired magazine investigator “accepts what he thinks is a run-of-the-mill assignment to interview McAfee, but once he arrives in Belize, he finds himself pulled into McAfee’s escalating paranoia, slippery reality, and murder.”

The film will be produced by Condé Nast’s Dawn Ostroff and Jeremy Steckler; Zaftig’s Charlie Gogolak, Glenn Ficarra and John Requa, and Epic’s Joshua Davis. MadRiver’s Marc Butan and Epic’s Joshuah Bearman will executive produce.

Depp is represented by CAA; Alexander and Karaszewski are represented by CAA and attorney Christine Cuddy; Requa and Ficarra are represented by CAA and attorney Jeff Frankel; Condé Nast Entertainment is represented by CAA and attorney Ziffren Brittenham; and Davis is represented by UTA and attorney Linda Lichter.

IMR’s Cannes lineup includes “The Sisters Brothers,” directed by Jacques Audiard and starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Joaquin Phoenix, “Freak Shift,” directed by Ben Wheatley and starring Alicia Vikander, and “Dumplin,’” directed by Anne Fletcher and starring Jennifer Aniston.

News of the project was first published in Deadline.

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