Back in November 2011, when Jason Clarke signed on for The Hurt Locker writing/directing duo Mark Boal and Kathryn Bigelow's currently-untitled new project about the hunt for terrorist leader Osama Bin Laden, it was being reported that onetime potential leading man Joel Edgerton (Warrior) would not actually be involved with the film.
Jump ahead to January 2012 and not only is Edgerton officially onboard for Bigelow's movie, but even more acclaimed actors, actresses, and rising stars are looking to snag a role in the Navy SEAL tale.
The new Boal/Bigelow team effort is already attracting controversy - not only because of its subject matter, but also due to allegations about the filmmakers having been given access to classified information concerning the actual capture and killing of Bin Laden. As has been confirmed by Variety, that wasn't enough to scare off Edgerton; the actor is now set for the film, which will hit theaters less than a week before the actor's other major 2012 starring effort (The Great Gatsby).
Deadline is also reporting that Bigelow's project has recently attracted the interest of people such as Mark Strong (Sherlock Holmes), Jessica Chastain (The Tree of Life) and Édgar Ramírez (Carlos). Production is slated to begin on the film by February 2012, which may mean that Chastain would probably have to drop out of the Tom Cruise-starring Oblivon adaptation, should she sign on for the former.
Onetime potential starring candidate Rooney Mara (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo) is said to be out of contention now. However, there's no word yet about whether Edgerton's Warrior co-star Tom Hardy, Idris Elba (Luther), or any of the other previously-rumored stars are definitely no longer options to join the cast of Bigelow's movie.
While The Hurt Locker is a Best Picture Oscar-winner that is (in general) universally-admired, the Iraq War drama's fast-and-loose approach to the portrayal of military operations has earned the scorn of many who are more familiar with proper military protocol. Combine all that lingering admiration/resentment with certain moviegoers' feelings that a film about Bin Laden (no matter how it is designed) will always be inappropriate, and you can see why the new Boal/Bigelow collaboration is already attracting lots of negative and positive buzz.
To those who do like The Hurt Locker, regardless of its inaccuracies: it sounds as new Bigelow's new film could be just as dramatically-rich, well-acted, and as white-knuckle a thrill ride as that flick. To those who don't like The Hurt Locker, because of its inaccuracies: it's always possible that Boal and Bigelow will deliver more of a realistic military tale this time around - not only because they're more experienced in that area now, but also because the Bin Laden movie is fully based on a true story. Take all that as you will.
Bigelow's yet-to-be-titled Bin Laden film will be released in U.S. theaters on December 19th, 2012.
Source: Variety, Deadline