When Ben Stiller’s male fashion model comedy Zoolander came out in 2001, I felt I was in the minority for liking the film. While it received mixed reviews, no one I talked to seemed to have liked the film. Personally, I loved it. It felt like a throwback to Stiller’s short-lived and under-appreciated Fox sketch series The Ben Stiller Show.
But over the years, Zoolander seems to have built up an audience of fans to the point that it is starting to look like a sequel, something which Stiller has been talking about for a while, is coming together. Deadline Hollywood is reporting that Stiller is re-teaming with his Tropic Thunder co-writer Justin Theroux to draft a Zoolander sequel. Additionally, Theroux, who also scripted this summer’s Iron Man 2,will also direct the film. The ubiquitous Jonah Hill is in talks for the villain of the piece.
Looking over Theroux’s resume, he certainly appears to be a bit of a Hollywood chameleon. As actor, he has done quirky comedy films like Strangers With Candy, The Baxter (both 2005) and The Ten (2007) and more dramatic fare like American Psycho (2000), Miami Vice (2006) and David Lynch’s Mulholland Drive (2001) and Inland Empire (2006). And while Iron Man 2 and Tropic Thunder are his only two produced screenplay credit, that’s still pretty diverse.
Reportedly, Paramount wants to keep the film in the roughly $50 million range in terms of its budget. This is a prudent move on the studio’s part, as the original only earned $45 million at the box office. While it has gained a following on DVD over the last eight years, Zoolander hit theaters just a two weeks after the tragedy of 9/11 and it is possible that a New York City-set comedy was not what people wanted to see in theaters at the time.