Peter Farrelly‘s follow-up to his surprising Best Picture winner Green Book is getting two new stars.
The Greatest Beer Run Ever, a title more akin to Farrelly’s earlier comedy work alongside his brother, was set to star Viggo Mortensen and Dylan O’Brien. But the two have stepped aside due to scheduling issues, and Zac Efron and Russell Crowe have replaced them.
No offence to Mortensen and O’Brien, but this is an upgrade. Apple Studios, who are in talks to finance the project, are likely very happy to have two bankable names leading the film. It’s possible replacing them may have even been Apple’s request in exchange for financing the film.
Although The Greatest Beer Run Ever sounds more like the wacky Farrelly comedies of the past, it’s actually a true story based on the bestselling book by Chick Donohue and J.T. Malloy. Efron will play Donohue, who in 1967 set out on a wild journey from New York to Vietnam just to bring beer to his childhood buddies in the Army as they battled overseas.
Crowe will likely play a journalist reporting on Vietnam who meets Donohue in a Saigon bar and enlightens him regarding the truth about the war and how the American people have been lied to. Bill Murray is also reportedly being courted for a supporting role.
Farrelly has co-written the script alongside Brian Currie and Pete Jones. Skydance’s David Ellison, Dana Goldberg and Don Granger will produce with Andrew Muscato, who previously directed a short documentary on the real-life Donohue, which you can view below.
Production on the film is due to begin in August in either Australia or New Zealand.
Other upcoming projects for Efron include remakes of Firestarter and Three Men And A Baby, while Crowe will soon be seen in The Georgetown Project.
He’s also attached to star alongside Aaron Taylor-Johnson in indie drama Rothko, and he’s also got prison drama American Son – based on acclaimed French film A Prophet – in the works.