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Ben Stiller will direct and star in The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

Jul. 20, 2011by:
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THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY, a remake of an old Danny Kaye comedy, has been in the works for years and years. The project once had directors such as Steven Spielberg and Ron Howard linked to it, as well as stars like Jim Carrey, Owen Wilson, and Mike Myers.

Now, the guys at Twitch are reporting that Ben Stiller will take both the directorial reins and the title role. The guy had in fact already been rumored to be taking the lead part for months, but is now finally being confirmed. Stiller's acting/directing gigs have yielded comedy gems like ZOOLANDER and TROPIC THUNDER, so this is likely a very good thing.

Here's the lowdown on the Danny Kaye original (via Amazon):

If there's one movie Danny Kaye fans fondly remember, it's The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. The versatile comedian--also an unsurpassed song-and-dance man--plays a henpecked, thriller-genre book writer suddenly enmeshed in a real adventure involving the (literal) girl of his dreams (Virginia Mayo). Initially criticized for not staying true to the more melancholic sensibility of author James Thurber's original story (Thurber allegedly offered producer Samuel Goldwyn $10,000 to not make the film), it not only works as an independent story, but remains highly entertaining and wears well upon repeated viewing. Kaye's milquetoast Walter fantasizes distractedly about being heroic, whether a gunslinger, an Air Force pilot, or a riverboat gambler. His "Anatole of Paris" number, in which Walter fancies himself a French hat designer who, in the end, declares he hates women, is nothing short of brilliant. That number, like many of Kaye's trademark patter deliveries, was penned by his wife, Sylvia Fine. Kaye benefits from a wonderful supporting cast: Mayo; Boris Karloff as maniacal Dr. Hugo Hollingshead; Faye Bainter as Walter's repressive but lively mother; Ann Rutherford as his suspicious fiance Gertrude; and Gordon Jones as Tubby, who not only has designs on Gertrude, but provides the villain in Walter's fantasies.

THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY is expected to start shooting in January.
Extra Tidbit: For a great Danny Kaye flick, check out THE COURT JESTER.
Source: Twitch

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11:54PM on 07/20/2011

No mention of The Cable Guy?

Such a criminally underrated comedy.
Such a criminally underrated comedy.
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4:48PM on 07/20/2011

Cool.

stiller is getting old.
stiller is getting old.
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11:38AM on 07/20/2011

Bueno!

Stiller hasn't directed a non-entertaining flick yet!

He's in his wheelhouse here, people. Stand back and enjoy the spoils...
Stiller hasn't directed a non-entertaining flick yet!

He's in his wheelhouse here, people. Stand back and enjoy the spoils...
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9:16AM on 07/20/2011
I agree with jasper. Ben Stiller fits this role. Also, I am glad for a Walter Mitty movie. Kids should know Walter Mitty. He is part of the children's literature canon the same as Huck Finn, The Bridge to Tarabithia, or the Grimms' Fairy Tales. Kids know Stiller from Night at the Museum. I could see a valuable project developing here. Also, remember that Kaye did his version (of Mitty) many years back. So, rightily or wrongly, kids are unlikely to see an "old" version of a story that they might
I agree with jasper. Ben Stiller fits this role. Also, I am glad for a Walter Mitty movie. Kids should know Walter Mitty. He is part of the children's literature canon the same as Huck Finn, The Bridge to Tarabithia, or the Grimms' Fairy Tales. Kids know Stiller from Night at the Museum. I could see a valuable project developing here. Also, remember that Kaye did his version (of Mitty) many years back. So, rightily or wrongly, kids are unlikely to see an "old" version of a story that they might value.

Of course, one wants this Walter Mitty interpretation to be a good one. Recently, movie-goers had a Gulliver's Travels adaptation that was of questionable value, for example.
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7:53AM on 07/20/2011
An updated version of Walter Mitty could work with Stiller at the reins. I sincerely hope they don't remake The Court Jester, Danny Kaye's performance is perfect throughout.

"The pellet with the poison's in the vessel with the pestle; the chalice from the palace has the brew that is true!"
An updated version of Walter Mitty could work with Stiller at the reins. I sincerely hope they don't remake The Court Jester, Danny Kaye's performance is perfect throughout.

"The pellet with the poison's in the vessel with the pestle; the chalice from the palace has the brew that is true!"
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Please email me when someone replies to my comment
8:26AM on 07/20/2011
"Just remember that."
"Just remember that."
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