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CODE NAME: THE CLEANER

About The Production
When New Line Cinema presented Robert Adetuyi's original screenplay of Code Name: The Cleaner to producers Jay Stern and Brett Ratner, principals of Rat Entertainment, they immediately recognized it was a great idea for a movie. A few drafts later, Cedric the Entertainer came aboard to star as well as produce along with his producing partner Eric Rhone. During the period of script rewrites by George Gallo, Cedric helped to shape his character into a role tailor-made for his comedic talents.

"What I like to do as a comedian is try and identify with the ‘Everyman',” says Cedric. "Just imagine being a regular worker, a guy who wakes up in the middle of some big government operation. Your immediate feeling would be, ‘I am not prepared for this!' But in your mind, you believe that you can handle the job, so you just do what you gotta do in a very common man kind of way. I think it shows there is a greater hero in all of us if given the right opportunity.”

"Also, I liked the idea of playing a comedic version of The Bourne Identity, a guy who's a fish out of water who believes he's living in the big world of spies and espionage,” continues Cedric.

Adds producer Eric Rhone, "In our collaboration, Cedric and I were able to bring many of our own ideas to the table. For instance, we suggested many of the flashback moments to help fill in Jake's storyline and the specific events which ultimately lead up to his current predicament – memory loss, mistaken identity, espionage, danger and beautiful women.”

During this period, Les Mayfield signed on to direct, followed soon after by Executive Producers A.J. Dix and Anthony Rhulen, heads of FilmEngine, who agreed to partner with New Line Cinema to finance the film, with New Line retaining domestic distribution rights and FilmEngine in charge of foreign sales.

"It's a comedic approach to the ‘who-am-I?' film genre, using The Bourne Identity as a template,” says director Les Mayfield. "We set out to make it very real, and with Cedric as the centerpiece, we decided it would be fresh, interesting and funny to try and turn this genre on it's head. Basically the fun of the story is watching Jake struggle to determine who he is. He believes at one point he's an operative, an undercover CIA agent. He equally believes that he's also a janitor, so he struggles between these two different identities as we watch him piece together his identity from scratch.”

Adds producer Jay Stern, "The comedy within this Bourne Identity context is relatable for everyone, and there's nobody better to play the lead role of Jake than Cedric the Entertainer. He's our ‘Everyman'. We worked together to tailor the role for him.”

"Depending on what perspective you take,” continues Stern, "Jake is either a James Bond-like secret agent or a special forces commando type like Rambo. Or he's a janitor. And we go back and forth thinking he's one or the other. What's interesting is that we watch as Cedric's character actually tries to create his own identity out of clues and dreams. The identity he invents is somebody who's great – a hero type. And that's something everyone can identify with because everybody has some kind of wish to be great.”

Notes producer Eric Rhone, "What makes this film project so fun is the combination of comedy, suspense, action and, of course, beautiful women who are smart, sexy and tough. The action elements take Cedric into a new genre in which he capitalizes on his everyman appeal and his own agility. Jake is such a likeable character who daydreams about being a hero…a concept that most of us can relate to. The loss of his memory lends itself perfectly to his fantasies as he's now forced to recreate his own life from bits and pieces of his flawed and overly creative memory.”

"Cedric is a true comedic genius,” proclaims producer Brett Ratner. "And Les Mayfield is the perfect director

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