One of the most intriguing film titles of recent memory, the thriller Cocaine Bear, has landed a new director as Universal is calling upon Elizabeth Banks to tackle this upcoming project.
Little is known about Cocaine Bear, even though the title instantly conjures up some unique visuals. We do know however that the script takes its inspiration from true events that took place in Kentucky in 1985 and is based on an untitled spec written by Jimmy Warden. It was also once described as a horror-comedy, but now is labelled as a thriller. Phil Lord and Chris Miller are set to produce.
Seeing brief popularity in 1985, the story of “Cocaine Bear” started when a bear was found dead after eating roughly $15 million worth of coke from a duffle bag dropped from a drug smuggler’s airplane. That smuggler was part of one of the elite Kentucky horse-breeding families and fell to his death when he bailed out of the plane.
According to insiders at The Hollywood Reporter, Cocaine Bear was pitched as a cross between Universal’s own Good Boys, the raunchy comedy featuring three 10-year-olds… and The Revenant! Yes, the Oscar-winning Leonardo DiCaprio film The Revenant, where we saw its actor play as a fur trapper that a Grizzly bear mauls.
The filmmaking group behind Ready or Not, Radio Silence (Matt Bettinelli-Olpin, Tyler Gillett, and Chad Villella) were originally attached to the project but recently left to tackle the upcoming Scream.
Coming off of 2019’s Charlie’s Angels, Banks is also attached to direct the Universal Monsters project The Invisible Woman. She has also helmed Pitch Perfect 2 and the upcoming X-Files-inspired comedy series, The Greater Good.