There’s a good chance that there’s nothing Bryce Dallas Howard can’t do. She’s a damn fine actress, with the ability to emerge unscathed from some awful, awful films (yes, Lady In The Water/Spidey 3, we’re looking at you). She carries off the whole three names thing with aplomb. She could probably knock together a cure for swine flu in the time it takes us to write this opening paragraph.
Oh, and now she’s turning her hand to screenwriting with a drama called The Originals. And the search for a director didn’t take long – her dad, Ron Howard, may choose the small, intimate project as his next movie after the big-budget Angels & Demons.
The Originals will mark the first time that father and daughter have worked together since she played Surprised Who in How The Grinch Stole Christmas, waaaaaay back in 2000. And, just to show that it's a real family affair, the script was co-written by Dane Charbeneau, who became engaged to Ron Howard’s other daughter, Jocelyn, during the writing process.
Frankly, it would have been a surprise if Howard Sr. hadn't ended up reading it at some stage - but reading it and agreeing to make it are two different things, so we can reasonably conclude that Howard Jr and her writing partner have some serious chops.
Anyway, The Originals will tell the story of a group of twentysomethings who reunite for a weekend in New York after hearing that one of their old teachers has mysteriously fallen into a coma. So it’s The Medium-Sized Chill, then – could be decent, especially if Howard Sr. brings his Frost/Nixon form to the table.
A note of caution must be sounded, however: Howard Jr. was prompted to write the screenplay because she wanted to tackle, in the words of The Hollywood Reporter, “the quarter-life crisis issues her contemporaries were dealing with.” Dear God in heaven… people are having quarter-life crises now? What are they worried about – whether they need to upgrade to the new iPhone?
Anyway, there’s no guarantee that The Originals will be Howard’s next film, but his company, Imagine, has picked it up for development, with Universal also getting in on the act.