Steve Carell Eyes Drama 'Dogs of Babel' (Exclusive)

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Steve Carell is taking a turn for the serious, attaching himself to star in Dogs of Babel, a drama for Mandate Pictures.

Carell will also produce the project, an adaptation of a novel by Carolyn Parkhurst, along with David Heyman of Heyday Films, Corey May and Dooma Wendschuh of Sekretagent Productions.

The novel, described as a tragic story of love and loss centers on a linguistics professor (Carell), who returns home one day to find his wife dead in their backyard. Though police rule her death an accident, the professor is not quite sure. With the only witness to the death being the couple's dog, the grief-stricken man endeavors to teach it to talk in the hopes that he can uncover what really happened.

Mandate plans on finding a director ASAP. The adaptation of the 2003 novel was initially set up at Focus where Todd Phillips was attached to direct and produce. John Crowley was also previously attached to direct it when it migrated to Mandate.

Mandate president Nathan Kahane will executive produce. Vance DeGeneres and Charlie Hartsock, who work with Carell at his Carousel shingle, will co-produce.

Jeffrey Clifford, the newly installed president of Heyday Film, will shepherd the project for Heyday while Nicole Brown will oversee the project on behalf of Mandate.

Lionsgate International is handling international sales on this title.

Carell is repped by WME and Media Four.

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