Casting Net: Jonah Hill in talks for the Coen Brothers' 'Hail, Caesar!,' more

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Image Credit: Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic

• Jonah Hill is in talks to join 22 Jump Street co-star Channing Tatum in the Coen Brothers’ Hail, Caesar! The film follows a 1950s Hollywood fixer, working to keep the studio’s stars in check. George Clooney and Josh Brolin will star. Tatum, Tilda Swinton, and Ralph Fiennes are in negotiations, and Scarlett Johansson is in talks to join the film. [The Wrap]

• Penelope Cruz is in final negotiations to join Sacha Baron Cohen in Grimsby. Louis Leterrier is directing Sony’s spy comedy, which follows a James Bond type (Mark Strong) who has to hide in his hometown and team with his goofy, English football brother (Baron Cohen). Cruz would be joining Rebel Wilson, Ian McShane, Gabourey Sidibe, and Annabelle Wallis. Baron Cohen, Phil Johnston, and Peter Baynham wrote the script. Baron Cohen is producing with Nira Park. [THR]

• Alec Baldwin has two potential exciting projects coming up. He’s currently in talks to play the head of CIA in the Christopher McQuarrie-directed Mission: Impossible 5. Additionally, Baldwin is in talks to join Will Smith in the Peter Landesman-directed movie about football concussions. [Deadline]

• Rebecca Ferguson is set to play the female lead in Mission: Impossible 5.  Ferguson is an on-the-rise Sweedish actress who received a Golden Globe nomination for her take as the title role in BBC’s The White Queen, and can next be seen in the Brett Ratner-directed Hercules. M:I-5 comes from Paramount Pictures, Skydance Productions, and Bad Robot. Tom Cruise will return as Ethan Hunt, and will also produce alongside J.J. Abrams and Bryan Burk. [Deadline]

Hot off of Maleficent, Elle Fanning is attached to star in the John Cameron Mitchell-directed How to Talk to Girls at Parties. The film is an adaptation of Neil Gaiman‘s short story, published in 2006, which tells the tale of two teenage boys who go to a party in 1970s London. One has no problem finding a girl, while the other does, but the latter soon discovers that there’s more to these girls than meets the eye. Howard Gertler will produce alongside Gaiman and Mitchell. [THR]

• Jane Krakowski, of 30 Rock fame, is teaming up with Adam Sandler and Kevin James for Columbia Pictures’ Pixels. Krakowski will play first lady alongside James’ President Cooper in the Chris Columbus-directed film. The Happy Madison and 1492 Pictures production tells the story of an alien invasion of Earth, the result of the misinterpretation of classic arcade games as a declaration of war. Krakowski will also join Michelle Monaghan, Peter Dinklage, Josh Gad, and Ashley Benson. [Deadline]

• Hiroyuki Sanada (47 Ronin, The Wolverine) will join Ian McKellen in A Slight Trick of the Mind. Bill Condon will direct the film, which tells the story of an aging Sherlock Holmes (McKellen). Sanada will play Umezaki, a Prickly Ash plant enthusiast who Holmes visits in Japan. Sanada will also join Laura Linney who will be playing Holmes’ housekeeper. [Deadline]

• Aurora Perrineau has been cast in the sci-fi romance Equals, which is directed by Drake Doremus. The film is set in a future society where emotions are turned off, but Silas (Nicholas Hoult) suffers from “switched-on syndrome.” Kristen Stewart also stars, playing a similarly “infected” member of society who hides her condition. In the film, Perrineau will play Iris, a new mother whose baby is born crying, indicating that the child has the capacity to feel. Perrineau will star in the upcoming Jem and the Holograms, and has also appeared in Pretty Little Liars and A House Is Not a Home. [Deadline]

• Cloris Leachman, James Wolk (Mad Men), Mickey Sumner (Frances Ha), Judd Nelson (The Breakfast Club), and René Auberjonois (Star Trek) have signed on for the indie comedy This Is Happening. The film marks the directorial debut of Ryan Jaffe, who wrote and produced as well. The film follows two siblings (Wolk, Sumner) who go on a road trip to take their grandmother (Leachman) to an assisted-living facility. [Deadline]


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