Budding Hollywood power player Megan Ellison is funding numerous indie projects on the horizon, including the next films from Spike Jonze and David O. Russell. The latter is preparing to move ahead with a movie that was previously known as American Bullsh**t, but has since abandoned that title (for obvious reasons).
Amy Adams picked up a third Oscar nod for her turn in Russell’s The Fighter, and is prepped to reunite with the filmmaker on his latest venture. The hot-in-demand actress (with roles in this fall’s The Master and Trouble with the Curve, along with next summer’s Man of Steel) just wrapped production on Jonze’s new movie, coincidentally enough.
Eric Warren Singer’s American Bullsh**t screenplay is based on the true story of con artist Mel Weinberg, and the role he played in ABSCAM: a far-reaching FBI sting operation that took place back in the 1970s and ’80s. Bradley Cooper (fresh off working with Russell on The Silver Linings Playbook) will portray Weinberg, while Adams is onboard to play his mistress and co-conspirator, Maxine “Max” Gardner.
Christian Bale (another Fighter alum) was previously attached to handle the role of “an ambitious FBI agent” in Russell’s new project, but had to drop out earlier this week. The Dark Knight Rises star has been replaced by Avengers‘ Jeremy Renner, who will make his third appearance in a major blockbuster released over the past year in next month’s The Bourne Legacy.
It’s somewhat unusual for the same actors to work with Russell more than once. The filmmaker is renowned for his off-beat artistic sensibilities (see his abandoned Uncharted movie), but also has a reputation as a prickly collaborator. Rumor has it that’s why The Fighter 2 is on indefinite hold right now, after Russell had a fall-out with leading man Mark Wahlberg (take that claim with a grain of salt).
Of course, being “difficult” is nothing out of the ordinary for Hollywood filmmakers, and Russell has proven himself time and time again to be a very capable director (with a genuinely unique voice). It’s for that reason that this writer is excited to see Russell’s spin on the ABSCAM subject matter – not to mention, the excellent cast at his disposal.
We’ll keep you updated on Russell’s American Bullsh**t project.