The resurrection of Arnold Schwarzenegger's acting career is well underway - what with his being recently confirmed to play a substantial role in Expendables 2 and his starring role in Jee-Woon Kim's The Last Stand, which looks to have secured one of its main villians.
Meanwhile, Anthony Hopkins is in final negotiations to star in Solace, a thriller that would see the Oscar-winner track down a dangerous serial killer; unlike in The Silence of the Lambs, though, Hopkins' character possesses some truly unique mental abilities... and doesn't have a thing for eating people.
Last Stand is already slated for theatrical release in early 2013, which means Ah-nuld's next onscreen appearance will be in the Expendables sequel. Solace is currently without a director and release date, but should have little trouble securing either, with Hopkins onboard as its star.
The Last Stand
Character actor Peter Stormare is well known (and admired) for playing villainous types, be it in Coen Brothers' movies (Fargo, The Big Lebowski), his turn as imprisoned mob boss John Abruzzi on Prison Break, or even Satan himself (Constantine). He's already playing another bad guy in next year's Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters - and looks to repeat the act in The Last Stand, assuming negotiations don't fall apart.
Variety has the scoop on Stormare signing up for Last Stand, which will star Schwarzenegger as Sheriff Owens, a disgraced ex-LAPD officer who now protects the sleepy Mexican-U.S. border town of Sommerton Junction. However, Owens has the chance to redeem himself when he becomes the only thing standing in the way of an escaped drug kingpin, who is attempting to flee the U.S. by crossing the border. Stormare is up to play Burrell, a "seasoned war veteran" who works for said fleeing criminal, and leads an eight-man operation to take down Owens and his squad of lawmen.
Early descriptions peg Last Stand as being a mix between a western and an installment in the Fast and the Furious franchise. Newcomer Andrew Knauer's original spec script has been rewritten by the likes of Jeffrey Nachmanoff (The Day After Tomorrow, Traitor) and George Nolfi (The Bourne Ultimatum, The Adjustment Bureau), so it will definitely be more of a high-octane thriller than a traditional Old West showdown.
Kim's previous directorial effort with western flavoring (The Good, the Bad, the Weird) was certainly a memorably stylish (if, at times, oddball) ride - so there's good reason to be interested in seeing how his first English-language project turns out.
Sir Anthony Hopkins is one of those actors who always elevates a film, no matter how schlocky or forgettable it is (see: The Rite). Hannibal "The Cannibal" Lecter remains the Oscar-winner's most iconic role, but he'll be playing a rather different character who is adept at getting inside criminals' minds (literally) in the crime procedural, Solace.
Variety is reporting that Hopkins has begun final negotiations to headline Solace as Dr. John Clancy, a psychic FBI agent who takes on an unusual serial killer case "that pits him against a formidable foe." Then again, when is that not the case in a crime thriller?
Mark Pellington (Arlington Road, The Mothman Prophecies) was set to direct the film back in 2008, but has since moved on and looks to direct a remake of The Orphanage instead. The original Solace script was penned by Sean Bailey and Ted Griffin (Ravenous, Ocean's Eleven), but has since been retooled by James Vanderbilt (Zodiac) and, most recently, two-time Oscar nominee Peter Morgan (The Queen, Frost/Nixon).
Solace basically reads as being a run-of-the-mill serial killer thriller, with a slight sci-fi twist. However, between Hopkins starring - and the combined writing talent that have worked on the screenplay - it could turn out to be something more memorable than that. If a credible filmmaker signs on to direct, that'll be all the more reason to look forward to this one.
The Last Stand will arrive in U.S. theaters on January 18th, 2013.
We will keep you posted on the status of Solace.
Source: Variety (link 1) (link 2)