"How I Met Your Mother" star Neil Patrick Harris will make his feature directorial debut with the romantic comedy "Aaron and Sarah," according to the Hollywood Reporter.
Emma Roberts and Josh Hutcherson are attached to star in the indie film, which follows a geeky guy and a popular girl who become friends during their freshman year of high school. Over the next four years, including four proms and one funeral, their relationship deepens as graduation grows near.
Chad Gomez Creasey and Dara Resnik Creasey wrote the spec — originally titled "B.F.F." — which landed on the 2007 Black List. Rogue Pictures bought the script several years ago before Fox 2000 picked it up out of turnaround. The project is no longer set up at Fox, but it could find its way there since development execs are familiar with the property.
Sandy Stern will produce for Single Cell Pictures, while Beau Bauman and Jesse Israel will also produce.
Directors David O. Russell ("The Fighter") and Joe Nussbaum ("Sydney White") were previously involved with the project.
Harris gained experience as a director this summer when he called the shots on an L.A. production of "Rent." But just because Harris is segueing behind the camera doesn't mean he won't be seen on the big screen anytime soon.
He next stars in CBS Films' "Beastly" and Columbia's live-action/CGI hybrid "The Smurfs." He's also set to reprise his role as "Neil Patrick Harris" in the next "Harold & Kumar" movie, which portrays the "Doogie Howser M.D." star as a pot-smoking womanizer (to hilarious effect).
Roberts currently stars opposite Zach Galifianakis in "It's Kind of a Funny Story." She recently wrapped Wes Craven's "Scream 4" and will soon be seen alongside Jennifer Connelly and Ed Harris in Dustin Lance Black's directorial debut, "What's Wrong With Virginia?"
Hutcherson most recently starred in Lisa Cholodenko's "The Kids Are All Right," and will eventually be seen in MGM's "Red Dawn" remake. He's currently filming the horror movie "Detention," and once that wraps, the actor head to Hawaii to shoot New Line's sequel "Journey 2: The Mysterious Island" with Dwayne Johnson and Michael Caine.
Harris is represented by Paradigm and the Booh Schut Co. Hutcherson is represented by ICM and the Beddingfield Co., while Roberts is repaid by Sweeney Management.