Kay Cannon will direct the quarter-life coming-of-age Lionsgate comedy 79ers, it was announced today by Nathan Kahane, President of the Lionsgate Motion Picture Group. The film will be produced for Lionsgate by Point Grey (Neighbors, Blockers) and Gary Sanchez (Daddy’s Home).
In 79ers, a group of estranged friends are forced back together after 20 years to complete a treasure hunt they attempted as misfit teens, but never completed.
Dylan Meyer has been hired to work on the screenplay originally written by Ben Schwartz. Matthew Janzen and Brady Fujikawa will oversee development for Lionsgate. Josh Fagen is overseeing the project for Point Grey. Kevin Messick will oversee the project on behalf of Gary Sanchez.
“Kay is wonderful at capturing characters in situational conflict and is the perfect choice for this re-engineered coming of age comedy. I hope when we are finished with this film it feels like Goonies for adults,” said Kahane. “I have loved this script ever since I first read it. It has such great roles for a group of actors as our estranged friends have the wisdom and life experience of 30 year olds but the baggage of their teen years that they have to overcome as they reunite for a legendary treasure hunt that has eluded them for decades.”
Cannon most recently made her feature directing debut with the hit comedy Blockers for Good Universe, Point Grey, and Universal Pictures. The modestly-budgeted movie generated over $94 million in box office revenues worldwide.
Cannon also wrote the Pitch Perfect franchise, which has grossed over $500 million worldwide, and is the writer-director of the upcoming musical comedy reimagining of Cinderella, starring Camila Cabello, for Sony Pictures.
Cannon is the Creator/Showrunner of the Netflix series Girlboss, based on Sophia Amoruso’s best-selling autobiography, starring Britt Robertson. There, she met her now-producing partner Laverne McKinnon, who served as Executive Producer on the show and the two launched their production company, K&L Productions. Their company has set-up several projects through their first-look deal with Sony Pictures TV including an hour-long action comedy to Amazon Studios, which Cannon co-created and will direct.