There's more casting news to catch up on, starting with what could've been the next team-up with actor Mark Wahlberg and writer/director David O. Russell, 2 Guns.
Russell was previously planning to script and direct 2 Guns for Universal, with Vince Vaughn attached to star - however, both have seemingly passed on the project and now, Wahlberg looks to headline the movie instead.
2 Guns is an adaptation of the comic book by Steven Grant, which tells the story of two undercover men - a DEA agent and Naval Intelligence officer - who join forces to rob a bank that houses mob money. As it turns out, though, the pair were set up and inadvertently steal $50 million from the CIA.
Deadline says that Wahlberg is currently in negotiations to sign on for 2 Guns, which is now being scripted by Blake Masters (Law & Order: LA). Wahlberg will work alongside Russell Crowe on Allen Hughes' Broken City, which begins production this November, before he'd appear in the comic book pic.
Given the convoluted plot and self-described pulpy feel of 2 Guns, it sounds like the sort of odd tale that would've been right up Russell's alley. The original graphic novel has been described as a cross between Ocean's Eleven and The Italian Job. So, assuming you liked Wahlberg in the remake of the latter, you'll probably like him in 2 Guns as well.
Wahlberg and Russell are expected to work together again soon, possibly on The Fighter 2.
Now You See Me
Casting Morgan Freeman in your movie is very rarely, if ever, a bad decision. Hence why the latest report from Variety, saying that the Oscar-winner is in discussions to join Louis Leterrier's Now You See Me, sounds like a good move for the heist pic.
Mark Ruffalo and Amanda Seyfried recently signed on for the film, which will star Jesse Eisenberg as the arrogant-but-talented leader of a pack of illusionists (known as "the Four Horsemen") who use their shows as a cover for a series of daring bank robberies - and hide their profits afterwards by giving it away to people in the audience.
Freeman would play Thaddeus, an ex-magician who's made a career out of exposing how others' illusions work - with Ruffalo playing a FBI agent hot on the criminals' tails. Seyfried and Mélanie Laurent (Inglourious Basterds) will serve as the film's crooked and law-abiding femme fatales, respectively.
That all sounds a bit ludicrous and over-the-top - but again, isn't that exactly the kind of high-octane thriller that Leterrier (The Transporter) handles best?
Chan-wook Park (Oldboy, Thirst) is making the jump to Hollywood shores with his Hitchcockian drama Stoker, which is being scripted by Prison Break star Wenworth Miller and produced by Ridley and Tony Scott.
Mia Wasikowska stars in the film as India Stoker, an eccentric teenager who is struggling to deal with the recent death of her father. However, her mourning gets put on the back-burner when her mysterious uncle (Matthew Goode) shows up and strange, sinister events begin to occur seemingly as a result. Nicole Kidman is starring as Wasikowska's mother, with people like Jackie Weaver, Lucas Till (X-Men: First Class), and Alden Ehrenreich (Twixt) rounding out the cast.
THR is reporting that Dermot Mulroney has signed on to portray Wasikowska's late father in the film. The actor is probably best-known for playing ordinary-but-handsome types in films like My Best Friend's Wedding, though he has successfully played against type in the past (see: About Schmidt). He will have a more significant role in upcoming titles like Abduction and The Grey, along with a supporting part in Clint Eastwood's J. Edgar.
Overall, Stoker has a great cast, intriguing premise, and a director in Park who's known for not pulling any punches when it comes to making intense and often disturbing foreign-language dramas/thrillers. So here's hoping that Park doesn't lose that edge with his U.S. film debut.
Stoker could be aiming for a theatrical release date in late 2012.
Now You See Me will likely reach theaters by early 2013.
2 Guns isn't expected to reach theaters until 2013.