Casting Net: Tom Hardy in talks to join Johnny Depp in 'Black Mass'; Plus, Will Smith, Saoirse Ronan, more

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Image Credit: Stephen Lovekin/FilmMagic

• Tom Hardy (Inception) is in early talks to join Johnny Depp (who is now officially signed on again) in the Whitey Bulger pic Black Mass. Hardy would play FBI Agent John Connolly, a childhood friend of Bulger’s who gets in trouble when he reveals inside information to Bulger about an impending indictment. Scott Cooper (Out of the Furnace, Crazy Heart) recently agreed to direct the film. [Deadline]

• Will Smith will not be returning for Independence Day 2. But, as Roland Emmerich told EW last March, he had never planned for Smith to appear in the movie anyway. [Deadline]

• Saoirse Ronan (Hanna) and Cynthia Nixon (Sex and the City) have signed on for Stockholm, Pennsylvania from writer-director Nikole Beckwith about a kidnapped girl who is reunited with her parents after 20 years. Originally a play, Beckwith’s script was on the 2012 Black List, won the 2012 Nicholl Fellowship, and was refined at the Sundance Screenwriting Lab. Jason Isaacs stars as Leia’s (Ronan) captor. [Deadline]

• Salma Hayek is attached to star in The Septembers of Shiraz, an adaptation of Dalia Sofer‘s novel about a Jewish family in Iran during the 1981 Islamic revolution. Wayne Blair (The Sapphires) is set to direct. [THR]

• Mike Tyson and Pamela Anderson are in talks to join Werner Herzog‘s adaptation of Vernon God Little. [THR]

• Bradley Whitford (The West Wing), Eliza Dushku (Dollhouse) and Joel David Moore (Avatar) have all boarded the Gregg Allman biopic Midnight Rider. [Variety]

Deadwood star Ian McShane has signed on to join Patrick Wilson (The Conjuring) in The Man on Carrion Road, which Gonzalo López-Gallego (Apollo 18) will direct. [The Wrap]

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