Singer-songwriter Shawn Mendes will make his big-screen acting debut in Ivan Reitman’s musical Summer of Love.
The 18-year-old Canadian broke out as a Vine star, but has since become a full-fledged sensation thanks to such hits as “Stitches” and “Treat You Better.”
Reitman, who also is Canadian, enlisted Mendes to star in the project, which currently is being shopped to studios. Reitman has never directed a musical before.
While plot details are being kept under wraps, the title is believed to reference the summer of 1967, when as many as 100,000 people, mostly young hippies, converged in San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury neighborhood in opposition to the Vietnam War. The summer was known for iconic musical performances in Northern California by such artists as The Who, The Grateful Dead, The Animals, Jefferson Airplane, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and The Byrds. The pic is described as a road-trip movie.
Reitman’s Montecito Picture Co., which has its own financing, paid for the film’s development. Reitman, who wrote the story, last directed 2014’s Draft Day. Shawn Wines, Lorene Scafaria and Leonard Blum penned the screenplay.
Summer of Love won’t mark Mendes’ first film role, as he voiced a character in The Weinstein Co.’s 2013 animated film Underdogs, but it represents his first live-action part in a feature.
Musicals suddenly have renewed currency in Hollywood in the wake of La La Land‘s success. That film recently crossed the $400 million mark worldwide.