Friends WIth Benefits

Ok, this settles it. “Film projects” are the new “candid photo”. The following is from a Variety profile of a new up and coming writer called Liz Meriwether.

“Friends With Benefits” (AKA “Fuckbuddies”), Meriwether’s romantic comedy script written for Ivan Reitman’s Montecito Picture Co., is set to star Natalie Portman.

“She has a very fresh and very original voice,” says Reitman, who approached Meriwether with the title. “I’ve been trying to find comedy voices for my entire career of making movies, and I think her words utterly represent the craziness of relationships amongst 20-year-olds today. It’s fairly unique, but also insightful.”

Later on there’s another mention of Natalie and the project.

A big fan of fart jokes and profanity, the Michigan native gives props to Judd Apatow for reviving the R-rated comedy, but she chooses to tell stories about the female experience. “Benefits” turns the romantic comedy upside down, beginning in bed and then exploring whether the relationship is worth pursuing. Refreshingly, the female lead character — the Portman role — just may not be that into him.

“People want to put women in one box,” Meriwether says, “and I’m interested in how women can be everything at once. She can be a slut who wants to fall in love, or she can party too much, but she’s still very smart. I want to expand the vocabulary.” With impeccable comic timing, she adds, “We’ll see how long I last.”

Spoonbat, who found the article, is a little worried that this might turn into another disposable romcom. Personally, it doesn’t sound like that to me. Those kind of scripts tend to almost come off a production line whereas this writer sounds like she has a real voice.

I did a little poking around and have heard that this is not a done deal YET. She is “loosely attached” but there are lots of other things going on that might mean she passes. Or she might sign up, but as of right now, the article is being a little misleading about Natalie’s involvement.