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Casey Affleck Wants Out of the Friend Zone in ‘The F-Word’

Alex Holdridge will direct Fox Searchlight's romantic comedy from a script by Elan Mastai

Oscar nominated actor Casey Affleck is in talks to star in Fox Searchlight's "The F-Word," his publicist has confirmed to TheWrap.

Alex Holdridge ("In Search of a Midnight Kiss") will direct the romantic comedy from a screenplay by Elan Mastai, which landed on the 2008 Black List. The script is based on the play "Cigars and Toothpaste" by T.J. Dawe and Michael Rinaldi.

The misleading title stands for "friendship," as the story follows two best friends — a guy and a girl — who struggle with falling in love without ruining the unique bond between them. You see, the young man develops a romantic interest in his BFF but decides to hide his attraction for her until she can admit to feeling the same way. Awww!

So basically it's about a guy trying to move out of the Friend Zone and score in the End Zone. It definitely feels familiar, but I really enjoyed Holdridge's indie debut and the material sounds like it could provide a nice change of pace for the super-intense Affleck, whose resume primarily consists of serious fare outside of Steven Soderbergh's "Ocean's" trilogy.

Russell Smith and Liane Halfon of Mr. Mudd Productions will produce "The F-Word" with NHO Entertainment's Mark Costa and Ford Oelman, as well as Marc Stephenson of Sheep Noir.

Affleck recently directed "I'm Still Here: The Lost Year of Joaquin Phoenix," a documentary about his Oscar nominated brother-in-law that Magnolia Pictures will give a platform release to on September 10, with the film going wider the following week.

Last week, Affleck was sued for $2 million by one of the documentary's producers who alleges that the filmmaker sexually harassed her and denied her producing fee when she refused to spend the night in a hotel room with him.

Affleck's lawyer said “the allegations brought upon our clients are preposterous and without merit,” and added that Affleck will file cross-claims.

Affleck recently gave an impressively creepy performance in Michael Winterbottom's otherwise abysmal "The Killer Inside Me."

He is represented by WME and Brillstein Entertainment.