This is the dawn of a prosperous comedy career for Melissa McCarthy, and sort of a post-brunch period of the same type of career for Jason Bateman. The year saw both comedians get unprecedented notoriety. McCarthy earned it for her breakout role in Bridesmaids, and Bateman swept 2011 with several comedic roles, most notably the summer’s Horrible Bosses. The two are pairing up in what should be, if history predicts anything, quite the formula.
The new comedy is called ID Theft: one character steals the other one’s identity. Pretty low-concept, which often means pretty high-laughs. As you would assume, the wildcard Melissa McCarthy will be the thief, while Jason Bateman will again don the role of put-upon victim. But just because Bateman is the victimized character, it doesn’t mean that there won’t be room for some against-type characteristics. Bateman has vocalized his desire to expand his horizons beyond the stressed out straight man. What with his producer’s credit on this film, he may have more control over what direction in which to take his character. Bateman himself was active in selecting McCarthy for the ID thief role, which was originally conceived for a man.
Whatever Bateman will be doing, this movie already seems promising. The comic chops of both stars are insurmountable. The plot is solid. The writers, Steve Conrad (The Weather Man) and Craig Mazin (The Hangover II) have impressed us before. So, good news all around.