Chris Pine was in talks to reprise his stage role in Farragut North, playing the character of Stephen Myers in George Clooney’s cinematic adaptation of the play. Ultimately Pine had to pull out of the project, likely due to his commitment to star in a number of upcoming, high-profile films, including Star Trek 2 and the Jack Ryan reboot, Moscow.
Ryan Gosling is now in talks to star in Clooney’s Farragut North as Myers, a young communications director who gets in over his head while working on the campaign for a political candidate who is looking to get nominated during the Iowa Democratic caucuses.
Farragut North was originally an acclaimed off-Broadway play written by Beau Willimon back in 2008. Willimon has spent the last several years collaborating with Clooney on a film adaptation of his work, which was itself inspired by the playwright’s experiences working on Howard Dean’s presidential run back in 2004.
Philip Seymour Hoffman is attached to play Myer’s boss in Farragut North, while Paul Giamatti is set for the role of a rival candidate’s campaign manager. Marisa Tomei and Evan Rachel Wood are reportedly still in talks to join the cast as well and would take on, respectively, the roles of an investigative journalist and a teenage political intern with whom Myers has an affair.
Most mainstream moviegoers are familiar with Gosling for his turn as Noah in the 2004 Nicholas Sparks flick The Notebook, though his most critically-acclaimed performance (and this writer’s personal favorite) was that of a drug-addicted elementary school teacher in the indie feature Half Nelson.
Gosling was rightfully nominated for an Oscar for his performance in that film and could pick up a second nomination this year for his turn opposite Michelle Williams in Blue Valentine, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year. He would be yet another fine addition to the impressive cast already set for Clooney’s next directorial feature.
Production on Farragut North is expected to begin next March, with a late 2011 theatrical release date in mind.