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'Bad Santa' creators join the police academy

December 8, 2010 |  1:13 pm

  Sant
"Bad Santa"  with cops?

On the heels of our story about the lack of Christmas movies this year-- even anti-holiday movies  -- comes word from "Bad Santa" writers John Requa and Glenn Ficarra that they're  going back to their roots.

The pair is working on a buddy-cop comedy with an acerbic tone similar to "Bad Santa"  -- that is, something very different from, say, "Rush Hour," and featuring anti-heroes in dark places.

"We owe one to those people [who loved 'Santa']. Since 'Bad Santa,' we haven't written for them," Requa told 24 Frames. "So we have one in mind for them."

The Terry Zwigoff-directed "Bad Santa," which starred Billy Bob Thornton as a con-man who dressed up as St. Nick to rob department stores with a diminutive sidekick (Tony Cox), became a surprise hit in 2003 and earned more than its share of fans, who saw the film as an antidote to the season's usual saccharine cheer.

Requa and Ficarra have been putting in their time as directors over the past few years. They just released the Jim Carrey gay con-man dramedy "I Love You Phillip Morris," which bounced among  distributors more times than Carrey's character bounced out of prison. And they recently completed a Steve Carell-Julianne Moore comedy "Crazy, Stupid, Love," scheduled for release in early 2011. But they're now taking a year off to write several screenplays, including the cop movie.

Requa and Ficarra were reluctant to reveal too many details about the film's plot, except to say that it will focus on two mismatched police personalities. When we offered that it sounds like "Lethal Weapon" meets "Bad Santa," Requa replied: "That you can print."

--Steven Zeitchik

twitter.com/ZeitchikLAT

Photo: Bill Bob Thornton in 'Bad Santa.' Credit: Dimension Films

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