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Casting Net: Gwyneth Paltrow may join Johnny Depp; Plus, Andrew Garfield, Abigail Breslin, more

Gwyneth Paltrow (Iron Man 3) and Ewan McGregor (The Impossible) are in negotiations to join Johnny Depp‘s Mortdecai. The story follows Charles Mortdecai, an art dealer racing to uncover a Nazi bank account full of gold. The project is expected to start production later this year. [Variety]

99 Homes, a story of a man who loses his home due to foreclosure, has snagged Andrew Garfield (The Amazing Spider-Man) for the lead role. Garfield’s character will find himself so desperate that he starts working for the man who took his home, going so far as to assist him in illegal activities. [THR]

• Abigail Breslin (The Call) will be returning to the world of the walking dead in Maggie, where she’ll play the titular role — an unfortunate young woman who is infected by a virus that is sweeping the globe. Arnold Schwarzenegger will play her father. [THR]

'August: Osage County' trailer: Julia Roberts, Meryl Streep, and more! -- VIDEO

August: Osage County (out Nov. 8) may well become the year’s fanciest movie about a trashy family. It’s based on Tracy Letts’ hours-long, Pulitizer prize-winning play (which we said was “horrifyingly, deliciously mesmerizing”) and is directed by John Wells from Letts’ adaptation. The cast is stuffed from every angle with talent: Ewan McGregor, Sam Shepard, Abigail Breslin, Juliette Lewis, Chris Cooper, Benedict Cumberbatch, Julia Roberts (as the favorite daughter), and Meryl Streep (as the hated mother).

As the film’s first trailer makes clear, Osage County is a Jenga-like drama of family dysfunction, with funerals and divorces piling atop dinner-table conflicts. Roberts is weary. Streep, with a frizz of black hair, has the juiciest role in the play. Edward Sharpe plays in the background.

Is it foolish to admit I’m most excited for Juliette Lewis?


IFC Midnight purchases Abigail Breslin horror movie 'Haunter'


IFC Midnight has acquired the horror film Haunter, the new film by Canadian director Vincenzo Natali. The film, which premiered at SXSW, is a “reverse ghost story,” with Abigail Breslin (teenaged Little Miss Sunshine!) as a girl who — along with her whole family — was murdered in 1985. Nobody in the family knows they’re dead, besides Breslin, who works with a living girl to fight the evil spirit of a serial killer. So, you know, just another teen drama. READ FULL STORY

Halle Berry stars in kidnapping thriller 'The Call' -- WATCH

We aren’t in the Little Miss Sunshine era anymore. In the thriller The Call, all-grown-up Abigail Breslin gets kidnapped and calls 911 operator Halle Berry, who attempts a race against time to save the girl. But – twist! – turns out the kidnapper is actually someone from Berry’s past…and that’s where things get complicated. “You’re just an operator,” the bad guy taunts. “What are you gonna do?” Plenty, if the rest of the trailer is any indication.

Watch below: READ FULL STORY

'The Lords of Salem,' 'Haunter' among SXSW midnight features

Giant alien spiders attacking Los Angeles, mysterious strangers, supernatural phenomena, and a vampire who falls for a screenwriter are just some of the strange and fascinating SXSW picks for their popular Midnighters program.

“We work year-round searching for films that will wow our audiences at Midnight. This year we scoured the globe and brought back a batch that we knew would truly satisfy the gore hounds of SXSW,” said SXSW Senior Programmer & Operations Manager Jarod Neece in a press release announcing the lineup, Wednesday. “Full of scares, sex, madness, laughs, chills and major mind f—-, we hope there’s a little something for everyone.”

The Festival also selected 106 short films which will be shown in ten programs throughout the Festival. Shorts programmer Claudette Godfrey said in the press release that “this year’s selections beautifully capture, in a multitude of ways, the essence of existence in this very specific moment, while still managing to provide a much wider and relatable commentary across time.”

Take a look at a few of the midnight features and shorts that caught our eye.


Casting Net: Kenneth Branagh to play villain in (and direct) Jack Ryan film. Plus: Lena Headey, Abigail Breslin, Josh Holloway

• Lena Headey (HBO’s Game of Thrones) and Jared Harris (AMC’s Mad Men) will costar opposite Lily Collins and Jamie Campbell Bower in the feature adaptation of Cassandra Clare’s novel The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones. The series follows Clary Fray (Collins), a 15-year-old girl who learns she is part of the Shadowhunters, a team of warriors consigned to battle against an array of evil creatures. Headey will play Jocelyn Fray, Clary’s mother, and Harris will play Hodge Starkweather, the mentor to a group of young Shadowhunters. [Cassandra Clare/Tumblr]

• Abigail Breslin has joined Meryl StreepJulia Roberts, and Juliette Lewis in the feature film adaptation of Tracy Letts’ Pulitzer Prize-winning play August: Osage County. She’ll play Jean, the 14-year-old daughter of Roberts’ character, who likes to think she’s more rebellious than perhaps she really is. John Wells is directing from Letts’ screenplay. [Deadline]

• Josh Holloway (ABC’s Lost) has signed onto the corporate espionage thriller Paranoia, as an F.B.I. agent keeping tabs on Liam Hemsworth‘s character, who’s being blackmailed to spy on his company’s rival firm. Harrison FordGary OldmanAmber Heard, Richard DreyfussEmbeth Davidtz, and Lucas Till costar. Robert Luketic (21) is directing. [Variety]

Read more:
Casting Net: Gwyneth Paltrow eyeing foodie pic ‘Blood, Bones, & Butter.’ Plus: Amy Adams, Robin Williams, Kevin Kline
Casting Net: Jeremy Renner eyeing David O. Russell drama. Plus: Daniel Radcliffe, Juliette Lewis, Johnny Depp
Casting Net: Anthony Mackie may join ‘Captain America’ sequel as the Falcon. Plus: Richard Jenkins, Vince Vaughn

Casting Net: Sandra Bullock, Melissa McCarthy team for cop comedy. Plus: Mila Kunis, Peter Dinklage, Chloe Moretz, Rupert Everett, Tom Cruise

• Robin Williams, Mila KunisPeter Dinklage, Melissa Leo, and James Earl Jones have signed on for The Angriest Man in Brooklyn, about a patient who is erroneously told he has 90 minutes to live. The comedy marks the first film from Field of Dreams director Phil Alden Robinson since 2002’s The Sum of All Fears. [Screen International]

• Jessica Biel, Chloe Moretz, and Jeffrey Dean Morgan will star in The Devil in the Deep Blue Sea, about a widower (Morgan) who helps a girl (Moretz) construct a raft to cross the Atlantic Ocean. (Biel will play Morgan’s late wife.) Justin Timberlake will add two more hyphens to his multi-hyphenate resume, meanwhile, serving as the film’s composer and music supervisor. Bill Purple will make his feature directing debut from a script by Robbie Pickering (Natural Selection). [THR]

• Speaking of Chloe Moretz, the in demand actress is also in talks for Kick-Ass 2, reprising her role as Hit Girl, who will go into retirement. But will she stay there?! (No.) [Total Film]

Colin Firth, Emily Watson, and Tom Wilkinson will star in actor Rupert Everett‘s directoral debut The Happy Prince, a biopic about Oscar Wilde. Everett will play the famed author and playwright, and also wrote the screenplay. [Variety]


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