Leighton Meester, Adam Brody, Taran Killam Set For ‘The River Wild’ – Deadline

EXCLUSIVE: Single Parents alums Leighton Meester, Taran Killam and Adam Brody are reuniting for The River Wild—a reimagining of Uni’s 1994 adventure film of the same name, which is currently in production in Hungary. (The first image from the set of the reboot can be found below.)

The original thriller directed by Curtis Hanson watched as a family was forced to combat a pair of violent criminals in the wilderness while on a whitewater rafting trip. Meryl Streep, Kevin Bacon, David Strathairn, John C. Reilly, Benjamin Bratt and Joseph Mazzello starred in the pic scripted by Denis O’Neill. The film grossed over $94M worldwide, with both Streep and Bacon landing Golden Globe noms for their performances.

The new film from director Ben Ketai (StartUp) follows a brother (Killam) and sister (Meester) who love but distrust each other, as they embark on a white-water rafting trip with a small group, including the siblings’ childhood friend (Brody), who turns out to be more dangerous than he appears. Ogden Gavanski (Punisher: War Zone, Warm Bodies) is producing the reboot, penned by Ketai and Mike Nguyen Le (Patient Zero). The film will debut on non-theatrical platforms worldwide in 2023 from Universal 1440 Entertainmenta production arm of Universal Filmed Entertainment Group.

“We are excited to announce a thrilling new The River Wild story, with fresh characters and a story that brings the universe to new audiences and fans of the original,” said Glenn Ross, who serves as General Manager and Executive Vice President at Universal 1440 Entertainment. “The production features a talented cast, and we think movie lovers will be excited by director Ben Ketai’s modern take on the popular classic film.”

In addition to Single ParentsMeester has been seen on such series as The Orville, How I Met Your Father and Gossip Girl, among others. Notable past film credits include The Judge, Country Strong, Going the Distance and Date Night. Also coming up for the actress is the Netflix animated film My Father’s Dragon, from Cartoon Saloon’s Nora Twomey.

Killam is an SNL alum whose TV credits also include American Crime Story, Drunk History, Angie Tribeca, How I Met Your Mother and Scrubs. The actor’s film credits include Night School, Killing Gunther (which he also wrote and directed), Ted 2, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, 12 Years a Slave and The Heat, among other titles. Coming up next for him is the Pamela Fryman comedy Welcome to Georgia with Elizabeth Hurley and Hannah Simone.

Brody also voices a role in My Father’s Dragonand will reprise his role as Super Hero Freddy for Shazam! Fury of the Gods. Also coming up for the actor is the FX miniseries Fleishman Is in Trouble. He previously worked with Ketai on the Crackle series StartUp and is otherwise best known for his turn as Seth Cohen on The OC. Other recent film credits include Promising Young Woman, Jay and Silent Bob Reboot and Ready or Not.

Ketai created StartUp as well as Quibi’s The Expecting and Sony Pictures Home Entertainment’s Chosen. He also previously directed the horror pic Beneath and co-wrote the script for the horror Malevolent with Florence Pugh.

Le serves as a writer and supervising producer on Starz’s BMF. Past writing credits on the film side include Patient Zero, Dark Summer, Amnesiac and WMD

Universal 1440 Entertainment develops and produces live-action and animated films and series for worldwide distribution across all non-theatrical platforms. Since its formation in 2005, the group has assembled a roster of animated family fare that includes the Daytime Emmy-winning Curious George television series, as well as the animated features Mariah Carey’s All I Want For Christmas is You and Bobbleheads: The Movie. The group also has looked to build upon some of Universal’s fan-favorite live-action franchises including Tremors, Death Race, Scorpion King, American Pie, Honey, Bring It On and the Chucky films.

Meester and Brody are represented by UTA; Killam by UTA and Ziffren Brittenham; Ketai by APA, Writ Large and Felker Toczek Suddnleson; and Le by APA, Circle of Confusion and Lichter, Grossman, Nichols.

Adam Brody, Leighton Meester and Taran Killam in 'The River Wild'

Adam Brody, Leighton Meester and Taran Killam in The River Wild
Dávid Lukács/Universal 1440

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