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Zac Efron Starring In 'Charlie Countryman'?

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Feb 15, 2011 | 6:05am EST

Zac EfronTo some, Zac Efron will always be the fresh-faced teeny bopper who helped Disney sell billions of lunchboxes. But the former High School Musical star has plans to branch out and with a production company set up at Warner Bros. he could redefine his career in this next decade. Though none of the projects he's optioned have yet blossomed, he's still fielding offers left and right and today it seems he may have found his next gig.

The Playlist is claiming that the Efron has been formally attached to The Necessary Death of Charlie Countryman, a film that Shia LaBeouf was going to star in last year. Dante Ariola was on board to direct at that time, but the project is once again without a helmsman. Matt Drake, an up-and-coming scribe who also penned the Todd Phillips produced Project X (due sometime this year), wrote the 2007 Black List certified screenplay which centers on a young man who travels to Europe after his mother dies. There he meets and falls in love with a beautiful young lady who happens to belong to a violent gangster with a gaggle of goons at his disposal. Charlie fights wave after wave of thugs, enduring one beating after another to prove to the girl that he's her savior.

Described as being in the vein of Pulp Fiction, Charlie Countryman is billed as a stylized action comedy and given the love story aspect it seems like a potent hybrid of tones. If the past work of its producers is any indication of its direction (the film is being shepherded by Albert Berger, the man behind Election, Little Miss Sunshine and Cold Mountain as well as Dean Parisot, who directed Galaxy Quest and Fun With Dick and Jane), The Necessary Death of Charlie Countryman could be a cool mesh of genres and a unique experience. However, Efron hasn't shown me much depth even though he's trying to prove himself as an actor and I'm not sold on the project if he's the only draw. I didn't see his other Charlie movie - last summer's Charlie St. Cloud - so I'll reserve further judgment until I see what he does in The Lucky One later this year, but an exciting filmmaker could make all the difference.

Source: The Playlist

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