Ne-Yo headed to 'Venice Beach'

9:00 PM PST 10/16/2008 by Leslie SImmons, AP

Chart-topping musician exec produce, star in film

Chart-topping R&B act Ne-Yo is going multihyphenate. The singer is set to star, executive produce and write the soundtrack for Fox Atomic's "Venice Beach."

Duane Adler is penning the script for the music-driven romance. His credits include "Step Up" as well as "Save the Last Dance" and its 2006 sequel, in which Ne-Yo appeared.

Paul Hunter is in talks to direct the film. Hunter directed 2003's "Bulletproof Monk" but is best known for helming music videos for Eminem, Jennifer Lopez, Britney Spears and Marilyn Manson.

"Venice" centers on an 18-year-old Manhattan Beach woman who, after her talented older sister dies in a car accident, represses her own singing talent until she meets a gifted musician-singer (Ne-Yo) from Venice Beach. What starts as a budding romance between the two turns into a quest for a musical career, which is met with resistance from his friends and her family.

Mike Karz ("Good Luck Chuck"), Josie Rosen ("Just Married") and Ne-Yo's talent manager Yuson Charles are producing. Ne-Yo and his music manager Reynell Hay are exec producing; Fox Atomic's Jeff Arkuss will oversee production.

The WMA-repped Ne-Yo broke out in 2006 with his Def Jam album "In My Own Words," which bowed at No. 1 on the Billboard 200. The singer, whose real name is Shaffer Smith, is touring to support "Year of the Gentleman," which debuted at No. 2 last month. As an actor, Ne-Yo also has appeared in "Stomp the Yard."

Adler is repped by ICM and manager Tony Blain. WMA reps Hunter.
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