Zac Efron and John Cena joining new Peter Farrelly comedy?

Ricky Stanicky movie

You have to admire Peter Farrelly. After winning two Academy Awards for 2018’s Green Book, he didn’t just stick with Oscar-baiting prestige movies. His next two movies go back to his comedy roots, with his latest nearing deals with both Zac Efron and John Cena. Unfortunately, it’s not Kingpin 2. But it does have a better title: Ricky Stanicky.

In an interview with Deadline, Peter Farrelly noted that the planned movie, titled Ricky Stanicky, will be a comedy with heart. The R-rated Ricky Stanicky, he said, “I think is just a hilarious movie and it’s a great message, not just a bunch of hard-R laughs.” He further likened it to There’s Something About Mary, saying that smash comedy “was ultimately about true love.” Hmph, we thought it was ultimately about how the spelling of Brett Favre’s name makes no sense…

While no official plot synopsis is available, the movie will revolve around a group of male friends who blame their shenanigans and late nights on a fictional friend named Ricky. When their wives start to get suspicious, they hire a guy to play the role of Ricky Stanicky. John Cena is expected to play that role.

Peter Farrelly has been trying to make Ricky Stanicky, which begins filming next year, for around a decade. A potential drawback for fans of Farrelly may be that he didn’t write the script; those duties went to Brian Jarvis and Jim Freeman. Peter and brother Bobby Farrelly’s last outing, Dumb and Dumber To, was a critical and mental disaster.

While John Cena and Zac Efron are “not locked in,” their addition to the cast would be much welcome. Both entertainers (with one also being a sports entertainer) have proven they have comedy chops. Cena gave a scene-stealing turn in Trainwreck and carries the hilarious Peacemaker. At the same time, Efron’s charisma in Neighbors and Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates elevated otherwise mid-to-low-level comedies.

Peter Farrelly’s next movie, The Greatest Beer Run Ever, premieres at the Toronto International Film Festival next week. It’s due out in theaters and on Apple TV+ on September 30.

Source: Deadline

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Mathew is an East Coast-based writer and film aficionado who has been working with periodically since 2006. When he’s not writing, you can find him on Letterboxd or at a local brewery. If he had the time, he would host the most exhaustive The Wonder Years rewatch podcast in the universe.