Austin & Ally and Teen Beach Movie star Ross Lynch is making the leap into feature films with a new project.
Legendary’s Asylum Entertainment has bought a pitch from 17 Again writer Jason Filardi with Lynch attached to star. The plot of the film is currently being kept under wraps, but sources say it’s a high-concept supernatural comedy set in a New England high school.
Offspring Entertainment’s Jennifer Gibgot will produce with Asylum’s Steve Michaels and Jonathan Koch.
Lynch’s start is similar to 17 Again star Zac Efron‘s; he’s developed a strong teen fan base after starring in Disney Channel’s Austin & Ally as Austin Moon since 2011, and in the original movie Teen Beach Movie, which premiered in 2013 to huge ratings. It raked in 13.5 million viewers, making it the second-most-watched movie in cable TV history behind High School Musical 2.
Lynch will reprise his role in the sequel, which is set to air in 2015, and he continues his music career as the lead singer of the Hollywood Records recording group R5. He’s repped by The Savage Agency, Principato Young Entertainment and Felker Toczek.
Asylum Entertainment, known for unscripted and longform TV programming including miniseries The Kennedys, was acquired by Legendary at the end of 2013 with plans to expand into other genres in multiple platforms. Filardi’s pitch is the company’s first step into feature film development. Asylum’s upcoming projects include Lifetime’s Marilyn Monroe event miniseries starring Susan Sarandon and Kelli Garner, and a signature limited series for National Geographic in partnership with Imagine Entertainment and General Electric.
Along with writing 2009’s 17 Again, which helped Efron launch his movie career, Filardi wrote 2003’s Bringing Down the House. He recently sold the project Floors, based on a book by Patrick Carman, to Disney. He’s repped by Paradigm and manager Brian Lutz.