Magnum P.I. Feature Catches Dodgeball Director

DODGEBALL director Rawson Marshall Thurber has inked a deal to write and direct the big-screen adaptation of MAGNUM P.I. for Universal Pictures, reports the trades. Brian Grazer will produce via his Imagine Ent. company.

The original TV series, which ran from 1980-88 on CBS series, was created by Glen Larson and Don Bellisario. It followed the adventures of Thomas Magnum, a Navy intelligence officer-turned-private investigator hired by wealthy author and playboy Robin Masters to oversee security on the latter's massive Hawaii estate. Magnums dry wit and fast-driving Ferrari brought him conflict with Jonathan Higgins III, a proper Englishman who ran the estate. Magnum was aided on his investigations by Vietnam vet buddies, pilot T.C. and club manager Rick. Tom Selleck starred at Magnum.

The film, which will keep the tone of humor and adventure, will see Magnum and his pals searching for a missing buddy.

The shows creators will exec produce the film.

Universal president of production Donna Langley and director of development Erik Baiers will shepherd for the studio along with Imagine svp motion pictures Kim Roth.

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