Oscar-winner Danny Boyle is gearing up to begin production on his next project, Trance, this fall - even though the film isn't expected to actually reach theaters until 2013, due to the filmmaker's role in designing the Summer 2012 Olympics opening ceremony.
James McAvoy is reportedly all but locked to star in the museum heist-gone-wrong thriller, which could also feature two other big names - Oscar-winner Colin Firth and Scarlet Johansson - in pivotal supporting roles.
According to Twitch Film, the King's Speech star is being eyed to replace onetime candidate Michael Fassbender in the role of Aiden - a character who, according to previous reports, is the "shady" gang leader in Trance who hatches a plan to steal a lucrative piece of art with the assistance of an art auction house employee named Simon (McAvoy).
However, things take a turn for the dangerous when Simon suffers a head injury during the robbery and is unable to recall where he hid the coveted work of art. Naturally, Aiden and his fellow thieves suspect Simon of being a double-crosser, and recruit a hypnotist to recover the information from their accomplice's fractured mind.
Johansson is being eyed for the role of Elizabeth, who is presumably a stealthy member (the femme fatale?) of Aiden's criminal gang. Fans of the lovely actress can only hope the part requires her to don a skin-tight catsuit (and kick butt) like her Black Widow character in Iron Man 2.
So far the casting for Trance alone is enough to make this a heist pic worth keeping an eye out for. While it's too bad that McAvoy won't be reuniting with his X-Men: Fist Class costar (Fassbender) in Boyle's new picture, he seems like an excellent fit to play the possibly-in-over-his-head Simon in the film. Likewise, it would be fun to see Firth take on more of a villainous role than he's accustomed to - and, of course, Johansson being onboard for any movie is generally a plus.
Trance has the makings of more a straightforward genre pic than Boyle's last two directorial efforts (127 Hours and Slumdog Millionaire), but a creative one at that. Boyle's often hyper-kinetic filmmaking style would certainly benefit the storyline, which could take some unexpected twists and turns along the way. Plus, the crew of decorated names working on both sides of the camera could possibly elevate Trance into award-worthy material, at the end of the day.
Neither Firth or Johansson are locked at this point, but the opportunity to work with Boyle is not one that either star is likely to pass on. Firth is currently working on another heist pic, Gambit, and Johansson still has her Avengers work to finish, but their respective schedules are not so jam-packed that it'd be impossible for them to join the cast of Trance before the year is out.
We'll keep you posted on the status of Trance as more information is released.
Source: Twitch Film
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