Outrageous comedian Sacha Baron Cohen is reportedly very picky when it comes to the roles he'll take – which is probably why the actor hasn't headlined a film since 2009's 'Bruno.' That will be changing soon, however, when shooting begins on 'The Dictator' early next year -- a 'Coming to America' styled comedy that finds SBC playing a goatherder and dictator.
Fans worried that there'll be another multi-year break before Cohen lands in front of the camera again will likely find today's news that the controversial comic is already eyeing another starring vehicle a relief.
The LA Times' '24 Frames' blog has the inside scoop on Cohen's future plans – and his potential leading role after 'The Dictator' sounds right up the performer's alley given his penchant for playing odd characters.
If things pan out, Cohen will tackle the role of racist Spanish cop Torrente. The character, created by Spanish comedian Santiago Segura, is a popular comedy action series in Segura's homeland. The franchise has already spawned three films (all have topped the Spanish box office), with a fourth on the way.
Hit the jump for more details on the Hollywood remake of 'Torrente.'
If you're not familiar with the character, Torrente is a former cop who's a fascist, racist, balding, overweight chauvinist (amongst other character flaws). Even though he's been tossed off the force, he still patrols the city every night doling out "justice" – while often avoiding truly dangerous criminals. Aside from the bald and overweight part, this sounds like something perfect for Cohen.
'Torrente' is currently under development at New Line. Former 'Seinfeld' writers Alec Berg, Jeff Schaffer and David Mandel are hard at work on the script, and according to sources close to the project, Cohen has met with New Line several times about the project.
One potential selling point for the actor's involvement is the fact that the three scribes on this project are also the writers on 'The Dictator." If Cohen likes their work well enough to sign on to that project, it's not a stretch to see him coming onboard this one.
Cohen reportedly would like to film the westernized version of 'Torrente' in Spain – which makes sense given the series' lineage. The character would be an interesting change of pace for the comedian, given that his greatest successes have come playing absurdly dense, but loveable, people like Borat. 'Torrente' would find Cohen playing a funny, but somewhat unlikeable, cop – which should play right into his ability for pushing an audience's buttons.
We'll keep you posted on 'Torrente' and Sacha Baron Cohen's potential involvement as the film moves through the devlopment cycle. In the meantime, chime in below with your thoughts on an Americanized version of 'Torrente' with Sacha Baron Cohen in the lead.