Madagascar and Megamind director Tom McGrath will be making his live action debut with the Ben Stiller (pictured above) vehicle RentaGhost, based on the British comedy series about a temp agency for the dead.
Per Variety, “Animation director Tom McGrath is looking at the afterlife and in talks to direct Fox comedy ‘RentaGhost,’ starring Ben Stiller. Project would be McGrath’s debut directing gig in live action. It would also re-team Stiller with McGrath, who co-directed all three “Madagascar” toons, in which Stiller voices Alex the lion… Kevin McCormick (“Gangster Squad”) is producing through his Langley Park shingle with BermanBraun’s Gail Berman, Lloyd Braun and Patrick Pidgeon. Andew Mittman is co-producing.”
Stiller boarded “RentaGhost” last fall for Fox, which had acquired the comedy from Warner Bros., where Russell Brand had been set to star. Fox has tapped the Night at the Museum team of Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant to pen the script.
The original BBC series, created by Bob Block, ran for 58 episodes between 1976 and 1984 and centered on the recently-deceased Fred Mumford being determined to be more productive in the afterlife than he was during his 27-year existence. Mumford established RentaGhost — renting out ghouls, ghosts and other specters — to the living but things do not go according to plan.