Chris Farley biopic finds buyer, Paul Walter Hauser to star

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Wenlei Ma
The Nightly
2 Min Read
Chris Farley in Tommy Boy.
Chris Farley in Tommy Boy. Credit: Paramount

The upcoming Chris Farley biopic is confirmed after Warner Bros’ New Line Cinema picked up the rights to the movie.

The as-yet-untitled film will star Paul Walter Hauser as the late comedic legend while actor Josh Gad will make his directing debut behind the camera.

According to industry publications The Hollywood Reporter and Variety, bidding for the project was competitive.

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Lorne Michaels, the boss of Saturday Night Live where Farley was a cast member from 1990 until 1995, will serve as one of the producers alongside Erin David.

The movie has the blessing of the Farley and will be based on the book The Chris Farley Show: A Biography in Three Acts by Farley’s brother, Tom Farley Jr. and Tanner Colby.

Hauser got his big break in a supporting role in I, Tonya and went on to star in BlacKkKlansman, Cruella, Da 5 Bloods, Late Night and Richard Jewell, a Clint Eastwood-directed dramatisation about a security guard who was wrongly accused of the Atlanta Olympics bombing.

On TV, his most prominent role has been in Black Bird, in which he played, with chilling effect, Larry Hall, a real-life serial killer befriended by another inmate (Taron Edgerton) who had been tasked with eliciting information from Hall about his victims bodies.

Paul Walter Hauser
Paul Walter Hauser is set to play Chris Farley in a biopic of the late comedian’s life. Credit: BANG - Entertainment News

Gad is best known as an actor as the voice of Olaf in the Frozen movies, and as a voice actor and co-creator of Central Park. He has also starred in two seasons of Australian dramedy Wolf Like Me and is famous for originating the role of Elder Cunningham in The Book of Mormon on Broadway.The script is from Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber, a writing team who have previously penned 500 Days of Summer, The Disaster Artist and The Fault in Our Stars.

There is no news on other casting for the film but given Farley’s best friends and co-workers included the likes of Adam Sandler, David Spade, Chris Rock and Rob Schneider, it’s definitely a space to watch.

Farley was a beloved comedian known for his physical comedy, his work on Saturday Night Live and movies Tommy Boy, Black Sheep and Beverley Hills Ninja.

He died in 1997 at the age of 33 from an overdose of cocaine and morphine.

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