DEADLINE – DGA Award winner and 5x Emmy nominee Paul Feig has found a stellar trio to lead his new action-comedy Grand Death Lotto for Amazon Studios in John Cena (Peacemaker), Awkwafina (Renfield) and Simu Liu (Barbie).
The film penned by Rob Yescombe (Outside the Wire) is set in a very near future, in which a Grand Lottery has been established in economically challenged California. The only catch? You’ll need to kill the winner before sundown in order to legally claim their prize. New L.A. transplant Katie (Awkwafina) accidentally finds herself with the winning ticket and must join forces with amateur jackpot protector Noel (Cena) to make it to sundown in order to claim her multi-billion dollar prize, all while dealing with Noel’s protection rival Louis Lewis (Liu), who also wants to get her to sundown in order to claim his rich protection commission.
Roth/Kirschenbaum Films’ Joe Roth and Jeff Kirschenbaum will produce the Amazon Original Movie alongside Feigco Entertainment’s Laura Fischer and Feig, with Cena, Zack Roth and Yescombe exec producing. Production kicks off next week. The film will stream on Prime Video in more than 240 countries and territories worldwide.
“Grand Death Lotto is the kind of original idea audiences have been craving, and there’s no one better than the endlessly talented Paul Feig to steer the ship,” said Amazon and MGM Studios chief, Jennifer Salke. “We can’t wait to watch John Cena, Awkwafina, and Simu Liu bring this fun, action-packed script to life for our Prime Video customers around the world.”
“I love action comedy and extreme physical comedy and this movie has both in abundance, as well as a boatload of heart and hilarity,” added Feig. “This lotto will make winners of us all.”
Cena leads James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad spin-off series Peacemaker, which set viewership records for HBO Max upon its release last January. He’ll next reprise his Fast & Furious franchise role as Jakob in Uni’s Fast X, which hits theaters May 19. Other upcoming projects for the actor include the Matthew Vaughn-helmed Apple spy thriller Argylle, Prime Video’s Peter Farrelly comedy Ricky Stanicky and 20th/Hulu’s Vacation Friends sequel, Honeymoon Friends.
Awkwafina leads the acclaimed Comedy Central series Awkwafina Is Nora from Queens, which will be back for a third season, and will next be seen in Uni’s vampire pic Renfield opposite Nicolas Cage and Nicholas Hoult, as well as Disney’s The Little Mermaid. Additionally, she will star opposite Sandra Oh in an upcoming Untitled Sister Comedy Project for Hulu.
Shang-Chi and Kim’s Convenience breakout Simu Liu stars in Warner Bros’ Barbie from filmmaker Greta Gerwig, which is due for release on July 21. He also stars opposite Hamilton‘s Phillipa Soo in Andy Fickman’s romance One True Loves, which hits theaters on April 7.
Feig most recently co-wrote, directed and produced Netflix’s starry fantasy pic The School for Good and Evil, based on the same-name novel by Soman Chainani, which debuted at #1 on the platform in 88 countries. He’s a writer, EP and director of Fox’s Welcome to Flatch and also exec produces Minx, which has headed to Starz for its second season. Additional films helmed by Feig that have grossed $1B+ worldwide include Bridesmaids, Last Christmas, The Heat, Ghostbusters, Spy and A Simple Favor. And a sequel to the latter is in the works, as we were first to tell you last summer, with Feig directing and producing.
Cena is repped by WME, Intenta Media, and Johnson Shapiro Slewett & Kole; Awkwafina by UTA, Artists First, and Schreck Rose Dapello; Liu by CAA, Authentic Talent & Literary Management, and Sloane, Offer, Weber & Dern; Feig by CAA and Sloane, Offer; and Yescombe by A3 Artists Agency and Curtis Brown Group.