Zac Efron‘s post-Disney heartthrob career has mostly consisted of broad, mainstream fare like “Mike And Dave Need Wedding Dates,” “Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising,” “Dirty Grandpa,” and the forthcoming “Baywatch,” however, the actor has shown an interest in spreading his wings. Roles in Ramin Bahrani‘s underrated “At Any Price” and Lee Daniels‘ wild “The Paperboy” have highlighted a desire to add more dimension to his CV, but the actor’s next gig will shake things up considerably.
Efron has signed up to play serial killer Ted Bundy in “Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil And Vile.” Penned by Michael Werwie (who wrote the treatment for the short film/Ermenegildo Zegna advertisement “A Rose Reborn” directed by Park Chan-Wook), the film will tell Bundy’s story through the eyes of his longtime girlfriend, Elizabeth Kloepfer, who spent years denying the charges against Bundy, before finally turning him in to authorities. Behind the camera will be Joe Berlinger, perhaps best known for his documentaries, including the “Paradise Lost” trilogy, and infamously known as the director of “Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2.”
Bundy hasn’t really been portrayed in a major way on the big screen, aside from 2002’s mostly forgotten “Ted Bundy” directed by Matthew Bright. It’s certainly an opportunity for Efron to make his mark with some truly frightening material, but serial killer pics are all about tone, and if it’s even slightly off, the results could be unforgiving and/or distasteful. [THR]