Steve Carell and Charlie Kaufman set to team for ‘I.Q. 83’

'Eternal Sunshine' writer adapting 70s sci-fi novel by Arthur Herzog

Steve Carell is set to team with the Oscar-winning writer of The Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind Charlie Kaufman.

The Synecdoche New York director is working on his adaptation of the 1978 novel by Arthur Herzog. I.Q. 83 examines the aftermath of a virus threatening to dumb down the world.

Carell would play Dr. James Healey in the absurdist thriller, reports Deadline. After Healey’s team of scientists botch a DNA experiment and unleash an airborne virus, though not fatal, the race is on to stop the world’s population dumbing down from a pandemic that lowers the I.Q. of the afflicted.

But as the scientist struggles for a cure he himself is growing dumber. Society breaks down, mob chaos descends and civilisation is threatened with even the President appearing on TV drooling as he attempts to reassure the public.

Two of Herzog’s other novels have been made into films – Orca and 70s horror The Swarm which starred Michael Caine.

Kaufman is currently filming the comedy Anomalisa starring Jennifer Jason Leigh and David Thewlis.

Carell is tipped for an Oscar nomination for his next film. Based on the true story of a twisted millionaire Moneyball director Bennett Miller’s Foxcatcher sees The 40-Year-Old Virgin star don a prosthetic nose to play John du Pont.

Ahead of the Seoul games of 1988 du Pont bankrolled the training of Olympic gold-winning wrestler brothers Dave and Mark Schultz (Mark Ruffalo and Channing Tatum). They joined his Foxcatcher team before events took a sinister turn. Watch the trailer below.