Adolf Hitler farce marching to big screen

Adolf Hitler observes a parade of Nazi Stormtroopers in a 1940 photo. The company behind "American Idol" is developing a black comedy about Adolf Hitler's early years. REUTERS/File

COLOGNE, Germany (Hollywood Reporter) - The company behind “American Idol” is developing a black comedy about Adolf Hitler’s early years.

“Mein Kampf,” based on a dark farce by Hungarian playwright George Tabori, is set in a Vienna hostel before World War One. In the play, an insecure Hitler is befriended by an elderly Jew who gives him his infamous hair style and toothbrush mustache.

Tom Schilling (“Elementary Particles”) will star as Hitler, and Goetz Georg as his Jewish friend, Schlomo Herzl. Urs Odermatt will direct the production, which starts shooting in Vienna this week. UFA plans to release the film in Germany next year.

“Mein Kampf” marks the first production for German film group UFA Cinema, a new subsidiary of FremantleMedia, the producer of “American Idol,” “Family Feud” and a slew of other shows.

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter