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Casting Net: Noomi Rapace joins the CIA in 'Unlocked'; Plus, 'Star Wars: Episode VII', more

The original Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, Noomi Rapace, will star as a CIA Agent in Unlocked. Mikael Hafstrom (Escape Plan) is set to direct the thriller, in which Rapace’s character gets tricked into supplying info to the wrong side and ends up at the center of a potentially devastating biological attack on London. Peter O’Brien‘s 2008 Black List script was recently let go from Warner Bros. (which picked it up in 2010) and is being produced as an indie. [Deadline] READ FULL STORY

Casting Net: Chiwetel Ejiofor could be the next Bond villain; Plus, Ryan Reynolds, more

• Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 Years a Slave) is reportedly the front-runner to antagonize James Bond in the next film in the series. According to the report, no offer has been made yet. Daniel Craig will return to star as 007, and Sam Mendes, who directed him in Skyfall, is returning to direct. Production is supposed to begin this summer on Bond 24, scheduled for a Nov. 6, 2015, release date. [The Wrap] READ FULL STORY

Casting Net: Will Ferrell to play Bobby Riggs in 'Match Maker'; Plus, Johnny Knoxville, more

• Will Ferrell is attached to star in the tennis drama Match Maker, about the famous 1973 “Battle of the Sexes” match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs. Steve Conrad (The Pursuit of Happyness, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty) is writing the screenplay based on an ESPN.com article by Don Van Natta Jr. [Variety] READ FULL STORY

Box office preview: How high will Marvel's 'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' fly?

Comic book season is upon us, and there’s no turning back.

Disney and Marvel’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier is the (lucky?) first one out of the gates. As has become standard for Marvel releases, the question is not whether it will open at No. 1 (there aren’t even any other movies opening wide this weekend!), but just where it will fall on the golden brand’s sliding scale of successes and super-successes. Modern Marvel cinematic universe adaptations have opened anywhere from $65 million (Captain America: The First Avenger) to $207 million (The Avengers).

Here’s how things might play out, and let us know your predictions in the comments. READ FULL STORY

Casting Net: Amy Adams in talks for sci-fi thriller; Plus, Emily Blunt, more

• Amy Adams (American Hustle) is in early talks to star in Story of Your Life, a sci-fi thriller based on a Ted Chiang short story about a linguist who is hired to determine whether the aliens who have just landed on Earth are a threat. During her communication with the visitors, she beings to experience visions that help her determine why they are there. Denis Villeneuve (Prisoners) will direct off of a script from Eric Heisserer (Final Destination 5). [Deadline] READ FULL STORY

Ellie Goulding, Zedd will perform songs from 'Divergent' soundtrack at MTV Movie Awards

Although Divergent came out a little late in the game to get an MTV Movie Awards nomination of its own, the blockbuster film will still have a presence at this year’s award show. This time, Tris and Four will be represented with music.

MTV has announced that Ellie Goulding and Zedd with both take the stage during the awards show to perform songs from the Divergent soundtrack. Goulding will perform her single, “Beating Heart,” while Zedd is set to perform “Find You.”

The 2014 MTV Movie Awards, hosted by Conan O’Brien, air on Sunday, April 13 at 9 p.m. on MTV.

Casting Net: Ben Stiller in talks for 'I Am Chippendales'; Plus, Norman Reedus, more

• Ben Stiller is in talks to star in I Am Chippendales, the true story of the fraught ascent of the male stripper revue, based on Rodney Sheldon’s book. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty star would play Nicolas de Noia, a former choreographer who helped usher the show into the mainstream. The story will focus on founder Steve Banerjee. Alan Ball, best known for his work as an executive producer on shows like True Blood, Banshee, and Six Feet Under, will direct. [Variety] READ FULL STORY

John Carpenter to present Roger Corman with Legend Award at New Media Film Festival

One bona fide movie legend will fete another on June 11 when John Carpenter presents Roger Corman with the New Media Film Festival‘s Legend Award at the Landmark Theatre in Los Angeles. Carpenter is, of course, the director of such genre classics as Halloween and The Thing while the list of notable films made by producer and director Corman merely begins with The Trip, Death Race 2000, Rock ‘n’ Roll High School, and the original Little Shop of Horrors. As a distributor he was also responsible for introducing American audiences to an array of European art house films. (Those interested in learning more about the latter’s storied career should definitely check out my colleague Chris Nashawaty’s recent tome, Crab Monsters, Teenage Caveman, and Candy Stripe Nurses—Roger Corman: King of the B Movie.)

READ FULL STORY

MGM plans 'Pink Panther' reboot with 'Simpsons' director

The Pink Panther is coming (back) to the big screen.

MGM announced Monday it planned to reboot the franchise in a live-action/animation hybrid, focusing on the rosy-colored cat who soft-shoed his way through the intros to most of the films, rather than on the aloof Inspector Clouseau. They’ve tapped The Simpsons Movie director David Silverman to helm the project.

READ FULL STORY

'Fast and Furious 7' resumes production: James Wan tweets photo from set

After months of delays and resets following Paul Walker’s tragic death this past November, Fast and Furious 7 is revving back in to gear.

Director James Wan tweeted a photo Monday teasing the resumed production. “First day back filming. Better and stronger,” Wan wrote. READ FULL STORY

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