'Box' is a dark place for Diaz

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Cameron Diaz will open "The Box," a horror thriller being directed by Richard Kelly. Sean McKittrick and Kelly are producing via their Darko Entertainment label.

The story revolves around an unhappily married couple who receive a small wooden box on their doorstep. At the push of a button, the box brings its bearer instant wealth but also instantly kills someone the bearer doesn't know.

Diaz will play the wife. Casting of the other key roles, including the husband, is expected shortly.

The script, written by Kelly, is adapted from a Richard Matheson short story titled "Button, Button." The short story was the basis of a well-remembered "Twilight Zone" episode from the 1980s that Matheson adapted using a pseudonym.

Media Rights Capital, which was behind the funding of "Babel" and Sacha Baron Cohen's "Bruno" deal, is fully financing the movie, which will be in the $30 million range.

"Box" is eyeing a November start in Virginia. Perhaps signaling a pendulum swing in the horror genre, "Box" is aiming to be a PG-13 release, just like the recent John Cusack horror movie "1408."

Ted Hamm is exec producing.

Diaz reprised the voice of Princess Fiona for "Shrek the Third" and most recently appeared on the big screen in "The Holiday." She is repped by CAA and the Firm.

Borys Kit reported from Los Angeles; Gregg Goldstein reported from New York.
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