'Party' finds a host


Jonathan Kesselman will be the life of the party.

Kesselman, director of Comedy Central's "The Hebrew Hammer," will helm the remake of Blake Edwards' "The Party" that Marco Garibaldi is producing under his Godfather Entertainment banner.

Garibaldi said in the summer that he was jumping back into the Hollywood game by producing an update of the movie after several attempts at MGM and DreamWorks. The project is a $20 million, independently financed film that will aim for cameos by a number of high-profile Hollywood personalities.

Kesselman, repped by APA and Sleeping Giant, is best known for the Jewish blaxploitation spoof "Hammer," which starred Adam Goldberg as a violence-prone hero on a quest to save Hanukkah. He also is directing and co-writing "Odd Todd," about a man faced with the hard luck of locking himself out of his apartment as his unemployment checks stop, for Paramount/Nickoledeon.

Kesselman also is producing and will direct "Abe Gilman's Ending" for his Worldwide Media Conspiracy banner.

In Edwards' "Party," Peter Sellers starred as Hrundi V. Bakshi, an Indian extra inadvertently invited to a swank Hollywood party. Garibaldi, who has brought on Brandon Gibson and Jim Russo to help him write the script, will tweak the conceit, focusing on a blond Midwesterner whose appearance is changed by studio execs eager he fit a part. (partialdiff)