Adam Sandler and Disney might not seem like the most obvious bedfellows, but the Mouse House has partnered up with Happy Madison Productions in the past. That was for 2008’s forgotten family fantasy Bedtime Stories, which starred Sandler as a hotel handyman who discovers that the titular tales he’s been telling his niece and nephew have come true.
Like the overwhelming majority of the actor’s output, Bedtime Stories was largely panned by critics but was a hit at the box office, with a haul of $212 million offsetting a Rotten Tomatoes score of 26%. Insider Daniel Richtman reports that Disney are now interested in having The Sandman develop another big budget comedy for them, but the word ‘develop’ is key in that it could present a potential legal and contractual minefield.
You see, Happy Madison have an exclusive development deal with Netflix, meaning that Sandler can star in whatever project he wants for any studio as an on-camera talent, but the terms of his contract with the streamer prevent him from taking an active role behind the scenes when it comes to things like writing, producing or having a say in the cast or crew.
Adam Sandler can definitely take top billing in a Disney movie, no doubt, but it’s unlikely that he can create one from the ground up without risking a breach of his deal with Netflix. In any case, this is just the latest in a procession of potential destinations that Richtman has linked the 54 year-old with over the last several months, and as things stand, the only films he officially has in active development are sports comedy Hustle, existential sci-fi Spaceman and Murder Mystery 2, all of which are set up at Happy Madison’s home base.