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Daniels to direct McConaughey, Efron, Maguire in The Paperboy

Buyer interest is swirling around the $20m Lee Daniels project The Paperboy, a sexy thriller that has been reconfigured with Matthew McConaughey, Zac Efron, Sofia Vergara and Tobey Maguire in talks to star.

Daniels, a 2010 Oscar nominee for Precious, will write and direct the tale based on Pete Dexter’s novel about a newspapermen who investigates a murder case and fall for a femme fatale.

Producers are targeting a summer shoot on the Millennium Films project after Daniel’s Civil Rights drama Selma stalled.

Hilary Shor will produce and Cassian Elwes, Avi Lerner, Trevor Short and Danny Dimbort are on board as executive producers. CAA put the project together.

The Paperboy has been around in various iterations for at least a decade. It had previously been set up at Fox and MGM and at one point Pedro Almodovar was attached to direct. Nu Image is handling international sales.

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