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Bobby Cannavale, Robert De Niro Join Tony Goldwyn’s Comedic Drama ‘Inappropriate Behavior’

Tony Spiridakis wrote the screenplay based on his own experience as a dad to a child on the Autism spectrum

Bobby Cannavale is set to star in a comedy and drama called “Inappropriate Behavior” from “Conviction” director Tony Goldwyn, and Robert De Niro will also feature in the film in a major supporting role.

“Inappropriate Behavior” is a comic drama about the relationship between Max Brandel (Cannavale), a formerly successful late-night comedy writer turned not-so-successful stand-up comic, and his brilliant but complicated 9-year-old son Ezra, who struggles with Asperger’s.

Having recently blown up both his career and his marriage, Max now lives with his father Stan (De Niro), a gifted chef whose eccentricities caused him to lose his restaurant and become a doorman. Max, profoundly at odds with his ex-wife and her new boyfriend about how to address their son’s needs, decides to kidnap Ezra and take him on a cross-country odyssey, with hilariously disastrous results.

Tony Spiridakis (“Ash Tuesday”) wrote the screenplay as inspired by his relationship with his own son also on the Autism spectrum and who is now a senior at college.

Goldwyn, Spiridakis, Howard Rosenman and actress Lois Robbins are producing “Inappropriate Behavior.” Principal photography will begin this August in the U.S.

Mister Smith Entertainment is launching international sales on the film this week at Cannes, with CAA Media Finance is representing North America.

“The development of this film has been a deeply personal journey. We are so proud to bring Tony’s hilarious and emotional screenplay to life and have embarked on a search for a brilliant young actor on the Autism spectrum to play Ezra,” the producers said in a statement.

“This is a very poignant and joyous story written by someone whose characters give neuro-diversity both agency and a voice – and a very funny one at that,” Mister Smith’s David Garrett added.

Cannavale and De Niro most recently starred together in Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman,” and Cannavale most recently starred in “Nine Perfect Strangers.” De Niro will next be seen in “Amsterdam” from director David O. Russell.

Cannavale is managed by Framework Entertainment and attorneys Schreck Rose Dapello Adams Berlin & Dunham LLP. De Niro is represented by RMG, CAA, and Grubman Shire Meiselas & Sacks.

Variety first reported the news.

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