Spy vs. Spy, the long-running Mad Magazine comic strip created by Antonio Prohias, is coming to the big screen. In the strip, a pair of spies conspire to murder each other but suffer a series of ironic reversals which result in the least suspecting party suffering a humorous demise. Ron Howard is directing, because apparently somebody saw The Grinch and said, "Let's get that guy."
Ron Howard has, of course, had an interesting career compromised of unexpected creative decisions. After his early success as young Opie on The Andy Griffith Show in the 1960's, he eventually turned to directing with the car thief movie Grand Theft Auto. From there he went on to direct such comedies as Splash and Gung Ho, such sci-fi/fantasy films as Willow and Cocoon, such dramas as Apollo 13 and Frost/Nixon, such thrillers as Ransom and Angels & Demons, and such awful crap as The Grinch, The Da Vinci Code and A Beautiful Mind, the film which won him an Oscar for Best Director for some reason. He's also set to direct the movie series based on Stephen King's The Dark Tower, but since that production has hit a serious snag he's apparently looking for other projects in the interim.
So to make a long story short, Spy vs. Spy isn't an entirely weird film for Ron Howard to direct. Just a mostly weird one. The plotless, character-less series is mostly a series of visual gags, which have never really been Howard's strong suit. Popular Hollywood screenwriter David Koepp (Spider-Man, Jurassic Park) will guide a script to be written by John Kamps (Ghost Town). Deadline had the story.
On an amusing but unrelated note, the protagonists of Spy vs. Spy were also reportedly John Woo's inspiration for many of his action movies, so at least the series already has an impressive cinematic pedigree.
Crave Online will be back with more Spy vs. Spy news provided nobody sees this bomb we've got behind our backs.