MGM has picked up the North American rights to “Dog,” a road trip comedy starring Channing Tatum that he will co-direct with his partner Reid Carolin, it was announced Monday.
MGM acquired the rights to “Dog” in a bidding war with several studios after Tatum and Carolin presented the film to buyers at the American Film Market, and the studio has already set a release date for Valentine’s Day 2021 through United Artists Releasing. Filming begins on “Dog” this May.
Tatum will star as a former Army Ranger who is unwillingly paired with a Belgian Malinois dog named Lulu as they race down the Pacific Coast in the hopes of making it to a fellow soldier’s funeral on time. Along the way, they’ll drive each other completely crazy, confront the possibility that pet psychics are real and begin to reckon with the one thing they were trained never to do: surrender.
Tatum and Carolin will co-direct “Dog” from a script by Carolin and a story by Carolin and Brett Rodriguez. Gregory Jacobs will produce along with Peter Kiernan and Rodriguez for their Free Association banner. Ken Meyer and Betsy Danbury will executive produce. Cassidy Lange will oversee for MGM.
“‘Dog’ is a story that’s been growing in our lives for years, so we’re deeply honored that Mike De Luca and MGM have chosen to help us bring it to life, and to support our first film as directors. As long-time admirers of Mike’s taste and creative instincts, we couldn’t be more excited to join forces with him and the entire team at MGM to share ‘Dog’ with audiences everywhere,” Carolin and Tatum said in a statement.
“Having known and admired Reid and Chan for years as great guys and natural born storytellers, I couldn’t be prouder and more excited to work with them, Greg Jacobs and Glen Basner on this, their first film as directors. The story’s strong heart, humor and power reflect not only their talent but their humanity, and all of us at MGM hope this is the first of many,” Michael De Luca, MGM’s motion picture group chairman, said in a statement.
Tatum and Carolin presented the film to buyers at AFM. FilmNation represented the international rights, with CAA and CAA Media Finance Group brokering the domestic license to MGM. “Dog” is the first major acquisition for De Luca in his new role as MGM’s motion picture group chairman.
Tatum was recently set to star in Disney’s live-action musical comedy “Bob The Musical,” which he’ll also produce with his Free Association banner. “Free Association” most recently produced Sony’s “Fatherhood” starring Kevin Hart and are currently producing “Soundtrack of Silence” with Tatum starring.
Tatum, Carolin and Free Association are represented by CAA, Hansen, Jacobson, Teller, Hoberman and Relevant.