• Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan may reunite on screen for the actress’ directorial debut Ithaca. Hanks would have a cameo role in the World War II coming-of-age drama based on William Saroyan’s novel The Human Comedy and already serves as an executive producer. Erik Jendresen (Killing Lincoln) adapted the script that will also feature Ryan onscreen, as well as the previously announced Sam Shepard (August: Osage County), Melanie Griffith (Working Girl), and Jack Quaid, Ryan’s son with actor Dennis Quaid. This would be the fourth time the pair has appeared on screen together after Joe Versus the Volcano, Sleepless in Seattle, and You’ve Got Mail. [Variety] READ FULL STORY
Tag: Wes Bentley (1-7 of 7)
We all know Abraham Lincoln as our 16th president, but what was his upbringing like? Director A.J. Edwards sheds some light on that topic in the Sundance film The Better Angels, starring newcomer Braydon Denney as young Abe, Diane Kruger (Inglourious Basterds) as his stepmom, Brit Marling (Another Earth) as his birth mother, and Wes Bentley (American Beauty) as his teacher.
Edward and his cast sat down with EW’s Anthony Breznican in Park City to talk about life before the iconic top hat.
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Casting Net: Sigourney Weaver in talks to lead the Shadowhunters; Plus, Joan Cusack, James Marsden join Kristen Wiig comedy, more
• The franchise business can be a funny one. Save for a few clips here and there, the world has yet to see — let alone weigh in on — the first film adaptation of Cassandra Clare’s The Mortal Instruments series, which opens on August 21, but the filmmakers are already gearing up to start shooting the second installment in October. Sigourney Weaver is in negotiations to play one of the few new roles that appear in City of Ashes, the second book in Clare’s series about a normal girl (played by Lily Collins) who finds out she’s actually a Shadowhunter, or, a race of sort-of humans who protect the world from werewolves, vampires, and other mystical creatures. Weaver would play the leader of the Shadowhunters out for vengeance against the man who killed her son. [THR]
Casting Net: Melissa McCarthy in talks for a James Bond inspired role; Plus James McAvoy as Dr. Frankenstein, more
• Melissa McCarthy can basically do whatever she wants these days, especially alongside her Bridesmaids and The Heat director Paul Feig. Her latest awesome endeavor? Potentially starring in Susan Cooper, a spy comedy about a James Bond-esque character. McCarthy, of course, would play the female Bond spinoff. According to the report, the project is being developed as a potential franchise and Feig would direct. Scheduling could be an issue, though. McCarthy has multiple projects with her production company On the Day as well as her Mike & Molly commitments. Still, McCarthy as a James Bond-type sounds delightfully promising. [The Wrap]
Casting Net: Will Arnett joins 'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles'; Plus, Amy Adams, Christoph Waltz, Jim Sturgess, more
• The Michael Bay-produced Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has found another star. Will Arnett (Up All Night) has signed onto the film. Megan Fox created quite a stir last month when she signed onto the movie for the role of April O’Neil, the Turtles’ human friend. It has not yet been revealed who Arnett will play, though THR reports that he is not playing Casey Jones, another character from the 1980s comics that will be cast later. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is set for a June 6, 2014 release date. [THR]
• Things are coming together for the long-in-development Weinstein Company project Big Eyes. For the film, the Bob and Harvey Weinstein-run outfit, a perennial favorite during awards season, has scooped up some Oscar-friendly talent. Christoph Waltz, who won this year’s Best Supporting Actor Oscar for Django Unchained, and Amy Adams, nominated for The Master, will play the film’s leads, Walter and Margaret Keane. Big Eyes is based on the real-life story of the Keane couple, whose kitsch paintings of big-eyed children gained popularity in the ’50s and ’60s. Today it was also announced that Tim Burton will direct. [Deadline]
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Casting Net: Wes Bentley, Brit Marling join Lincoln biopic 'The Green Blade Rises.' Plus: Martin Freeman, Judi Dench, Steve Coogan
• Wes Bentley (The Hunger Games) and Brit Marling have joined The Green Blade Rises, a biopic about U.S. President Abraham Lincoln’s early years, including his father’s abandonment of him in the wilderness, according to a press release. Pegged as “the untold story of America’s greatest hero,” the movie will star Bentley as Lincoln’s first teacher, with Marling as Lincoln’s biological mother. Terrence Malick is producing from a script by AJ Edwards, who makes his directorial debut. The film also stars Diane Kruger and Jason Clarke as Lincoln’s step-mother and father.
• Judi Dench and Steve Coogan are set to star in in Philomena, based on the real-life story of a Irish woman searching for the son she put up for adoption in America as an unwed mother in the 1950s, adapted from journalist Martin Sixsmith’s book The Lost Child of Philomena Lee: A Mother, Her Son and a 50 Year Search. Dench will play Philomena Lee, and Coogan will play Sixsmith. Stephen Frears (The Queen) is directing from a screenplay co-written by Jeff Pope and Coogan. [Variety]
• The Hobbit star Martin Freeman, plus Paddy Considine, Eddie Marsan, and Rosamund Pike, have joined the cast of the Simon Pegg and Nick Frost comedy The World’s End, according to a press release from Focus Features, which will distribute the film in North America. The film teams director Edgar Wright again with Pegg and Frost, following their pairing up in Wright’s 2004 comic zombie romp Shaun of the Dead and 2007’s Hot Fuzz. Wright co-wrote the script with Pegg. The movie centers on five childhood friends who reunite for a marathon pub crawl they attempted 20 years earlier, but also grapple with the future of humankind.
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Casting Net: Justin Timberlake drinking in ‘The Last Drop.’ Plus: Nicolas Cage, Meryl Streep, Hilary Swank
Casting Net: Tom Hardy eyeing the peak of ‘Everest.’ Plus: Anne Hathaway, Jake Gyllenhaal, Rachelle Lefevre
Casting Net: Kate Bosworth to play a meth-head in ‘Homefront.’ Plus: Parker Posey, Milo Ventimiglia, Katee Sackhoff
Wes Bentley has come a long way since he first burst onto the scene in 1999’s American Beauty, the Oscar-winning film that featured him playing Kevin Spacey’s odd-ball neighbor. He recoiled from the fame and opportunity, and spiraled hard into the sludge of addiction. The 33-year-old has since pulled himself out of the poison, and is a proud husband and the father of a baby boy. “I’m now at two and a half years sober,” he tells EW. “A little over two and half years. I can’t believe it. I can’t believe that I’m alive, much less than I’m able to do the things I’m able to do just on a daily basis. Back then I was stuck. I literally physically couldn’t move before and now I have a 14 month old son and I’m back in the sunlight.” READ FULL STORY
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