Even before Valentine’s Day opened to huge numbers, New Line made a quasi-sequel, New Year’s Eve, a high priority, and the studio has been eager to get Garry Marshall to return to direct. Though he hasn’t officially signed on yet, it now seems imminent; he just broke free of his next commitment, Warner Bros.’ Blended, a comedy about two dating divorcées who bring their separate families together on a cruise. It’s assumed that he cleared his schedule to return to what New Line wants to turn into a holiday-themed franchise. Now all that’s left to do is cast 53 actors to deliver twelve lines apiece!
New Year’s Eve is not just a big deal for New Line, but also for camera-hungry New Yorkers who like standing ankle deep in icy slush and other worrisome effluvia for twelve hours or so: Insiders tell us that the studio plans to shoot the film — another sprawling ensemble production — right in Times Square as the ball drops this coming New Year’s Eve and will release the finished film around the same time in 2011. So thanks to Marshall, when your embarrassed family bemoans the big-screen footage of you throwing up against the front door of the ESPN Zone, you can confidently respond, “Relax! I was acting.”