Phoebe Waller-Bridge and Fiona Shaw Unite in John Krasinski’s New Fantasy-Comedy for Paramount

Phoebe Waller-Bridge has seen her profile rise dramatically in the last few years, and along with her upcoming role in Indiana Jones 5 with Harrison Ford, she has joined the cast of John Krasinski’s new fantasy comedy, which also stars Ryan Reynolds and Fiona Shaw. Formerly known as Imaginary Friends, the now untitled project is set to shoot next summer for a November 2023 release.

English actress Phoebe Waller-Bridge began her career on stage, and gained a lot of attention for Fleabag, first as a stage production and then a hit TV series in 2016 which won the actress an endless string of awards by the time its second and final season aired in 2019. Having since co-written the screenplay for No Time To Die, voiced Sayan Kotor in the TV version of His Dark Materials, and then secured her role in Indiana Jones 5, she has certainly taken a step up from her first TV roles on secondary channels in the U.K.

Phoebe Waller-Bridge joins this new film at the same time as Fiona Shaw, who have previously worked together in an episode of Fleabag and in the drama Killing Eve. Shaw has been a constant presence on screen since the 1980s, having appeared in movies such as My Left Foot, Three Men and A Little Lady, Super Mario Bros. and in the Harry Potter franchise as Aunt Petunia Dursley. Next year she will be seen joining the Star Wars franchise with a role in the Disney+ series, Andor.

There is currently not too much known about the new project, which was originally announced back in 2019 and will be produced by Paramount Pictures. The movie was subject to a fierce bidding war, which ended with Paramount beating off Sony, Lionsgate and more to pick up the project. John Krasinski will write, direct, produce and star in the film with Reynolds co-starring in the story of a man who is able to see and interact with the imaginary friends of other people, particularly those who have been abandoned and forgotten. However, like everyone down on their luck, some of these discarded friends have decided to turn to the dark side and it is down to Reynolds to save the world from their plotting.

Krasinski has shown his leading man abilities in the dramatic sense recently as the star and director of A Quiet Place, as well as working on the sequel both for Paramount, so it is not surprising they were so keen to get their hands on this title, especially with Reynolds also being on board. Of course, Ryan Reynolds himself was part of another bidding war around the same time, when Apple took on Spirited, his musical take on A Christmas Carol which co-stars Will Ferrell and is expected to be released sometime in December 2022. Recently, Reynolds had a huge hit with Free Guy, and after completing filming on Spirited announced that he is taking a short break from acting and has been filmed by fans recently out and about in the U.K.

The movie formerly known as Imaginary Friends is currently slated to arrive on November 17th, 2023. This story originated at The Hollywood Reporter.

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