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Steve Martins having The Big Year

You either loved or loathed him as a co-host at this year’s Oscars, so it’ll be a relief for some to hear that Steve Martin is retreating from the stage and returning to movies.

Not only that, but his latest project mercifully isn't another kid-themed atrocity ala Cheaper By The Dozen .

This time, Martin’s thinking about taking up bird-watching with Jack Black and Owen Wilson in The Big Year .

It’s a comedy set to shoot in Canada this May, and will be directed by David Frankel – who gave us other Owen Wilson vehicle Marley & Me , and Meryl Streep as a rich bitch in The Devil Wears Prada .

The flick’s based on the book The Big Year: A Tale Of Man, Nature, And Fowl Obsession by Mark Obmascik, and has been adapted for the big green by Someone To Watch Over Me scribe Howard Franklin.

Martin would play one of three men who embark on a bird-watching competition in North America, attempting to out-bird each other by spotting rare breeds. It mixes in themes about life and stuff.

Would it be too much to ask for something as funny and moving as Martin's buddy comedy Planes, Trains And Automobiles ? The comedy talent's certainly there, and Frankel has decent experience in balancing the catty, the comedy and the cuddles. Here's hoping.

Bird-watching? Lame or awesome?