It’s been 3 years since the Belushi film has been talked about. & now the film finally has a director after Todd Phillips (The Hangover) has left the project. Taking over the director’s chair is Steve Conrad who also wrote the film’s screenplay.
Conrad has done some work with the 2008 comedy The Promotion. He also wrote the screenplay for a comedic drama called The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, which stars Ben Stiller. Conrad is also currently filming the Vince Vaughn comedy, Business Trip. He has also done screenplays for The Weather Man & The Pursuit of Happiness.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Conrad is already looking at some potential actors that will play the late great, humorous, John Belushi & some of them are really surprising actually. According to their sources, Conrad has already met with Emile Hirsch (Into the Wild, Girl Next Door) & Adam Devine (Workaholics). Also, Joaquin Phoenix’s (Walk the Line, Gladiator) name came up.
To me, none of these actors resemble Belushi at all but I would say that the most skilled out of those names is Joaquin Phoenix. Devine would be pretty good because of his comedic work but I’m not sure if I could really see any of the 3 as Belushi.
Conrad has also met with Nelson Franklin (Scott Pilgrim VS. the World, New Girl) to play Belushi’s long time friend, Dan Aykroyd. Akyroyd is also serving as executive producer of the biopic & Belushi’s widow, Jody Belushi Pisano, is producing it.
Knowing that both Akyroyd & Jody Belushi are involved with the film, does help & makes me feel like the film will be as close as possible to how Belushi‘s life really was.
The Hollywood Reporter also says the film “hopes to tell the story of a man that embodied both the glory and the tragedy of the American dream as it focuses on Belushi at the height of his fame.”
John Belushi was known for his very energetic comedy style. He was a member of SNL from 1975-1979. His biggest films were Animal House & Blues Brothers. Dan Aykroyd also wrote the part of Dr. Peter Venkman in Ghostbusters, with Belushi in mind but Belushi passed away suddenly from an overdose in 1982 at the age of 33.