Russell Crowe will step behind the camera for the first time to direct a biopic of the late, great comedian, Bill Hicks.

According to Indiewire, Crowe was attached as the lead in the film for a time in 2008, but for whatever reason couldn't get it off the ground. He'll now step behind the camera but apparently not star in the project. That may have something to do with timing; Hicks was 32 when he died of cancer and Crowe is pushing 50.

For those that have never heard of Hicks, he's widely regarded as one of the most seminal comics of all time. His deadpan, intelligent observations on everything from religion to politics are still quoted today; he still toured as a comic after finding out that his illness was terminal. Crowe would've been a good fit for the comic, aesthetically, so it'll be interesting to see who he goes for. Someone with natural stage presence and a stand-up background like Seth Rogen maybe?

The film will go into production next year. Crowe has a bunch of acting work coming up including The Man with the Iron Fists, Broken City and Noah to get out of the way first. We'll next see him crooning alongside Hugh Jackman in a big screen adaptation of Les Miserables.