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Universal Picks Up Rainn's Renaissance Men

Published August 24, 2007 in Movie News
By Ryan Parsons | Image property of respective holders, Variety.
Rainn Wilson Rainn Wilson
Rainn Wilson and fellow actor Matt Ross have already got a distributor for Renaissance Men, a comedy they are co-writing.

Universal Pictures Nab Renaissance Men

Wilson's got to be feeling pretty good. First he gets his first Emmy nomination for his work on NBC's The Office and now he has Universal Pictures knocking on his door.

Renaissance Men follows two down-and-out community theater actors who think they've accidentally killed a co-star. In a panic, they go on the lam and hide out in a Renaissance fair.

It turns out that Wilson has long had a fascination with Renaissance fairs, events he attended with his family during his teenage years. I guess these two came in hand in hand, as Wilson was also a big Dungeons and Dragons fan at the time.

Wilson and Ross attended the same drama classes at the University of Washington, where Ross also took up fencing and swordfighting.

Nerd alert!

The duo has harbored the idea of a comedy taking place in a Renaissance fair for a long time.

"(Renaissance fairs) are fascinating," Wilson said. "Everyone has been to one, but no one really knows what makes them tick. The great thing about them is how seriously people take their duties at the fair or as their characters, whether they are doing swordfights or selling giant turkey legs. And I think that the best comedy comes from people taking ridiculous circumstances extremely seriously."

I'm sure the people who take these fairs seriously are just going to love a film mocking them.

Wilson is also writing Bonzai Shadowhands, a ninja comedy that Jason Reitman will direct for Fox Searchlight. Like Renaissance, the title characters will be losers.

"I will always write only loserish kind of characters. I don't think I have a handle on winners."

And we admire your confidence.

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Ryan Parsons
Sources: Image property of respective holders, Variety.

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