A bizarre online advert offering free lodgings in Brighton for anyone willing to dress as a walrus is to be made into a Hollywood film.
Legendary director Kevin Smith, who is best known for his Jay and Silent Bob movies, announced he is to shoot the movie Tusk in Los Angeles after seeing the advert.
The notification, offering free rent on a double room overlooking Queen's Park, was removed by Gumtree after it went viral last month.
But it caught Smith's attention and a hastily written script was sent to production companies.
The director of Dogma has now secured funds for the film and Hollywood actor and Quentin Tarantino favourite Michael Parks has been drafted in for the main role with shooting to begin in Los Angeles in September.
Writing on his blog, Smith said: “The listing was written eloquently and briefly mentioned that the writer had once been lost at sea, with a walrus he nicknamed Gregory as his only companion.
“The listing got my creative juices flowing and I began reconstructing the whole thing as an old British Hammer horror film, in which a mad scientist intends to sew some hapless lodger into counterfeit blubber, creating a chimera in an effort to answer the ultimate riddle.”
The Brighton man who offered the rent-free accommodation has not spoken publicly since his post.
He explained he was retiring to the Sussex seaside after leading a “long and interesting life”, some of which was spent just off the coast of Alaska with a walrus called Gregory.
He wrote: "Never have I had such a fulfilling friendship with anyone, human or otherwise, and upon leaving the island I was heartbroken for months.”
He added he had constructed a realistic walrus costume which “should fit most people of average proportions, and allow for full and easy movement in character”.
He said the lodger would need to wear the costume for “about two hours a day” and "be a walrus", including making walrus noises and eating fish.
Smith, whose is most famous for his comedy performance as Silent Bob, first mentioned the advert during a recording of his podcast on June 25.
So taken is he with the bizarre notification, he started work on the script of a related horror film entitled Tusk.
In the following podcast he pitched the idea to fans who in turn responded with support on Twitter with the hashtag “#WalrusYes”.
He added: “The moral of the story, kids? Chase every dopey dream you ever have, so long as it doesn't involve hurting or killing anybody.
“You never know where it will lead you. One month ago, a walrus was nothing more to me than something that gets its bucket stolen. But now? I am the walrus.”
See the latest news headlines from The Argus:
- Car bursts into flames in Brighton street and driver hot steps it away
- More strikes threatened on Southern Railway as drivers balloted
- Heathrow vs Gatwick: £2bn snub to Sussex economy as runaway bid scuppered
- Opportunities missed to help suicidal agony aunt who killed herself
- £100m laboratory would create 600 jobs and help produce next Nobel star