This week has graced us with some fairly good news for fans of Nicholas Stoller. Not only is he set to return to adult comedy mode after his work on The Muppets and its upcoming sequel, but he is also headed back to Hawaii. The Forgetting Sarah Marshall director is gearing up to write Aloha for Ben Stiller and Jonah Hill–a team that will hit the big screen for the first time next week in Akiva Schaffer’s The Watch.
That is just one of the many stories involved with this project which is still very much still in negotiations mode, but another important part of today’s news is that Shawn Levy will presumably be helming the ship which would reunite the director with Stiller. Levy previously worked with the actor on Night at the Museum and holds a fairly respectable comedy credit with 2010′s Steve Carell-Tina Fey movie Date Night. He is currently filming the Vince Vaughn-Owen Wilson Wedding Crashers reunion The Internship, so Aloha would likely be what gets his attention next.
Aside from who is shepherding the project forward, it is actually a pretty big deal that Jonah Hill and Ben Stiller are poised for a reunion. In the comedy world, such repeat collaborations tend to take years and this is happening fairly quickly even with the sense that Hill has never been busier. THR does note however that this bundling of talent is contingent on schedules syncing up suggesting there is a shot this thing may not be a done deal.
In terms of overall box office power, The Watch is scheduled to open around $30 million next weekend which is definitely not bad for an R-rated comedy. We are essentially talking about two very bankable stars who regularly are capable of pushing above $20 million, so if Aloha can get done on the cheap, profitability is almost guaranteed.