Picador has acquired Empire writer Nick de Semlyen's history of '80s comedy movies Wild and Crazy Guys.
World English rights for Wild and Crazy Guys were secured from Felicity Blunt at Curtis Brown. The book is described as a journey through the world of 1980s Hollywood comedy, following some of the era's most famous comedians, including Steve Martin, John Belushi, Bill Murray, Chevy Chase, and Eddie Murphy. As well as covering feuds and "terrible behaviour", the book will take a look at their most successful films, such as "The Blues Brothers", "Animal House", "Caddyshack", "Beverly Hills Cop", and "Ghostbusters". It is based on over 35 interviews between de Semlyen and "the main players of the era" to provide behind-the-scenes detail.
Paul Baggaley, publisher at Picador said: “Nick de Semlyen has written a brilliant and compelling account of the most exciting group of comedy writers and performers ever to 'grace' American cinema - Wild and Crazy Guys feels like it will give comedians in Hollywood their own equivalent to Easy Riders, Raging Bulls. I am delighted that Picador will publish this biography of a generation who changed the course of cinema, while causing such entertaining havoc, destruction and scandal along the way.”
de Semlyen, who is associate editor at Empire, said: "I've always been fascinated by the larger-than-life comedy superstars who ruled Hollywood in the 1980s. So to work on a book chronicling the adventures of Bill Murray, Eddie Murphy, Steve Martin et al in their prime is the stuff of dreams. The idea first occurred to me in 2012, when I got to sit down with Murray in Cannes to share a plate of cookies and discuss his legendary fist-fight with Chevy Chase. I then began work properly on it in 2015. It's been an epic task, but I can't wait for people to read the results. And I'm beyond delighted to have the phenomenal team at Picador working with me on my first book."
Picador will publish Wild and Crazy Guys on June 6th 2019, coinciding with the 35th anniversary of the release of "Ghostbusters".