Update: Latino Review reports that another actor has joined the cast as one of the assassins. See below for details.
Last summer it was revealed that box office draw Denzel Washington was in talks for the lead role in a new thriller entitled Safe House. Then just a few weeks after that it was revealed that another highly sought after role in the film was snagged by Green Lantern himself, Ryan Reynolds.
However, two actors are rarely enough to occupy an entire movie (although tell that to Reynolds who delivered a one-man show in last year’s Buried!) and so it’s been announced via Variety that four more actors have joined the cast of Safe House: Brendan Gleeson, Sam Shepard, Robert Patrick and Liam Cunningham.
Safe House is about a young CIA trainee (Reynolds) who must transport a dangerous criminal (Washington) to safety after the safe house where he is being kept gets attacked by assassins. Reynolds fans out there will likely see a resemblance to the 2006 action-thriller Smokin’ Aces, except this time Reynolds has to transport the criminal and not just protect him.
There are no details on who each of the four new cast members will be playing, but I can guess that at least one of them will play an assassin targeting Washington’s character (maybe Patrick?), while others could be playing other ranking members of the CIA.
Gleeson has been doing rather well for himself in some pretty major movies over the last few years, including Green Zone, Beowulf and three of the Harry Potter movies. You may know Shepard from the likes of Black Hawk Down and Stealth, and Patrick is, of course, best known for his role as the deadly T-1000 in Terminator 2. Cunningham was recently seen in such big blockbusters as Clash of the Titans and The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor.
Universal picked up the Safe House spec script last year (it was on the Hollywood “Black List”) but has now fast-tracked production to start as early as next week in the hopes of making a February, 2012 release date. The film is being directed by Daniel Espinosa (director of the soon-to-be-remade Easy Money) from a script written by David Guggenheim who also wrote Medallion, which is set to reunite star Nicolas Cage with his Con Air director Simon West.
Update: Latino Review is exclusively reporting that Swedish actor (of Syriac origin) Fares Fares has also joined the case of Safe House as a character called Emile Vargas. The script apparently describes the character as, “Ex-Paramilitary. Gun for hire. Hard body. Not particularly large — just lethal.” Fares worked with director Daniel Espinosa on a film called Snabba Cash (a.k.a. Easy Money)
Safe House may not sound like the most original thriller in the world but I am curious to see the film not just because of the actors involved (Washington and Reynolds alone are worth the price of admission, never mind adding these other four names to the mix), but also because of the fact that the role Reynolds ended up getting was highly sought after: actors including Shia LaBeouf, Taylor Kitsch, Chris Pine, Sam Worthington, Garrett Hedlund, Zac Efron, Channing Tatum, Chris Hemsworth and Jake Gyllenhaal were all apparently after the role before Reynolds got it.
Just what is it about Safe House that made so many of those popular young actors want in on it? I guess we’ll find out if and when the movie opens on February 10th, 2012.