Melissa McCarthy has boarded her next project, working once again with husband and frequent director Ben Falcone on science-fiction comedy Super-Intelligence for New Line Cinema.
McCarthy is one of the biggest names in modern comedy, and she works primarily with two directors for her various projects. When she’s not re-teaming with Bridesmaids director Paul Feig (they collaborated on The Heat, Spy and Ghostbusters since then), she’s working with husband and creative partner Ben Falcone. McCarthy and Falcone are one of the premier power couples working in comedy, writing scripts together as vehicles for McCarthy to headline to boost her stardom and for her husband to direct. They’ve worked on three projects together to date, to varying degrees of success, and they’ve officially announced their fourth collaboration today.
According to Variety, the duo will next partner with writer Steve Mallory on Super-Intelligence, a science-fiction comedy described as a buddy comedy set against the phenomenon of technological singularity, a high concept hypothesis that says humans will one day create artificial intelligence that will change the progress of the human species as we know it. Mallory worked with Falcone and McCarthy on The Boss, working once again on the script with them as McCarthy stars and Falcone directs. The duo will also produce the film under their On the Day production heading.
This looks to be the most ambitious collaboration for the McCarthy/Falcone combo yet, as their other works are much simpler in concept with somewhat progressive payoff. Tammy, starring McCarthy as an abrasive fast food employee who goes on a cross-country road trip with her grandmother (Susan Sarandon), grossed $100 million worldwide on just a $20 million budget, but received mixed to negative reviews from critics. The story was mostly same for The Boss, featuring McCarthy as a wealthy businesswoman who goes to jail for insider training and must regain her mojo by heading a Girl Scout troop. Little is known about the couple’s third film, a comedy titled Life of the Party, other than it will be released next summer the weekend after Avengers: Infinity War.
As with most stars of the comedy genre, it’s all about finding McCarthy the right project that will maximize her talents and not reduce her down to the most basic and restricting forms of humor. Falcone has sometimes struggled with avoiding the common denominator of pratfalls and lowbrow comedy in his previous works. Super-Intelligence is at the very least a fascinating idea, but that fascination means nothing if the film can’t deliver on the clever laughs that audiences hope to get from a McCarthy comedy. One hopes that Super-Intelligence, which has no current release date, will be the gem that the combo needs to certify their working relationship to the critical world.
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