Ellen Page and Michael Cera have signed to star in MandatePictures' coming-of-age comedy Juno, which Jason Reitman (Thank You For Smoking) is preparing to direct based on ascreenplay by Diablo Cody.
Page, who made a revelatory breakthrough in Hard Candy, will play a quick-witted teenager whoselife takes a bizarre turn when she becomes pregnant. Cera, who stars intelevision's Arrested Development, will play her loyal best friend and the unexpected father.
"Ellen and Michael are two of the finest young actorsworking today," Reitman said. "They bring the exact kind of humourand honesty this film needs. Their chemistry is simply incredible."
Mason Novick, Lianne Halfon and Russell Smith are producing alongwith John Malkovich under his Mr Mudd Productions label.
Mandate's Joe Drake and president of motion pictures Nathan Kahanewill serve as executive producers along with Dan Dubiecki, Reitman's partner atHard C.
Jim Miller brought the project to Mandate and will overseeon behalf of the company.Production is expected to begin early next year.
Page will next be seen in the true crime drama An AmericanCrime with CatherineKeener, and in drama The Tracey Fragments. She is represented by William Morris Agency and GaryGoddard Agency and her recent credits also include X-Men: The Last Stand.
Cera, who willnext be seen in Columbia Pictures' comedy Super Bad, is represented by Paradigm and ThrulineEntertainment.