Jonah Hill Promises ‘New Characters’ For ’21 Jump Street, Plans To Shoot ‘Early Next Year’

It still sounds almost too good to be true, but “21 Jump Street” really is happening. Jonah Hill co-wrote the script, is executive producing and will presumably star in some capacity. “Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs” helmers Phil Lord and Chris Miller are directing. None of this is new information, but it remains exciting. MTV’s Josh Horowitz got an update from Hill recently at the press junket for “Get Him to the Greek” and it seems that things are moving right along.

“I think we’re starting early next year… January or February is when we’re planning on starting shooting,” he said. And then the talk turned, as it always does, to the possibility of a Johnny Depp cameo. Depp, of course, starred in the original series, one of his major breakout roles. And Josh has been trying to engineer a cameo appearance for some time.

The latest is… there’s no news to report. Hill remains hopeful that it will happen, but he’s not counting on anything. “We wrote him a really, really funny cameo and I just hope he does it, it would be really cool,” he said.

Josh also asked Hill to speak to how his take on the classic TV series fits into the original’s universe. “We’re basically just fascinated and interested in the idea of going back to high school and getting to relive those high school years,” he said. “There’s kind of a ’Back to the Future’ element in that. Being young-looking cops was a great device to get to go back to high school again.”

Speaking specifically to how the original show’s characters factor in, Hill says they won’t. Not necessarily, anyway. “It’s not like anyone’s playing Johnny’s character, anyone’s playing Peter DeLuise’s character– these are new characters that we’re creating for the film and there might be some reference to some former ’Jump Street’ alums.”