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News and gossip on films in the works...
B O X O F F I C E|
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|F I L M N E W S|
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I N T H E U K . . .|
I N T H E U S . . .
Ben Affleck will direct and star in a new film version of Agatha Christie's WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION, about a lawyer representing a man accused of murdering a rich old widow who left her fortune to him. Billy Wilder's 1957 adaptation earned six Oscar nominations, including Best Picture.
Jared Leto will play a key role in the BLADE RUNNER sequel currently in production with director Denis Villeneuve. Harrison Ford returns to his iconic title role more than 30 years after the 1982 original, alongside Ryan Gosling, Robin Wright, Mackenzie Davis, Barkhad Abdi, Dave Bautista and Hiam Abass. The story is being kept under wraps.
Ellen Page and Kate Mara will team up for MERCY, a romantic drama about the daughter of a man on death row who meets a woman on the opposite side of his political cause. Israeli filmmaker Tali Shalom Ezer is directing from a script by Joe Barton.
Lea Seydoux and Charlie Hunnam will team up for an offbeat romantic drama directed by Drake Doremus from a script by Rich Greenberg. Nothing else is known about the untitled project at the moment.
Taylor Kitsch will play the villain in AMERICAN ASSASSIN, an action thriller about a linguistic student (Dylan O'Brien) who joins the CIA after his girlfriend is killed in a terrorist attack and is trained by a Cold War veteran (Michael Keaton). Michael Cuesta is directing.
Abbie Cornish and Ben Aldridge have joined the cast of AMRE, the true story of singer Amre Kashaubayev (Sanjar Madi), who travelled from Kazakhstan to Paris in 1925 for a singing competition, where she befriended George Gershwin. Photographer Jeff Vespa is making his directing debut.
Kathy Najimy, James Le Gros, Kathryn Erbe and Paul Iacono will star in the comedy DATING MY MOTHER, about a single mother and her gay son (newcomer Patrick Reilly) who are both looking for Mr Right. Mike Roma (Danny the Manny) is writing and directing.
Michael Gambon and Nick Moran have joined the drama MY NAME IS LENNY, which started filming this week in London. Josh Helman (X-Men: Apocalypse) stars as real-life boxer Lenny McLean, who was known as The Guv'nor. Costars include Chanel Cresswell (This Is England 90) and current bare-knuckle world champ Decca Heggie.
Mike Epps and Tip "TI" Harris will play brothers in THE TRAP, a comedy about a guy who returns home to work in the family restaurant, where a new chicken restaurant proves to be very popular. Chris Robinson is directing, with Queen Latifah producing.
And Vin Diesel has let slip that the Guardians of the Galaxy will turn up in AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR. Screen time will no doubt be at a premium in the crowded all-star Marvel adventure, which starts filming at the end of the year, directed by Anthony and Joe Russo.
Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon are teaming up to produce and star in TRULY MADLY GUILTY, based on the Australian novel about a fateful weekend that brings six people together, plus three kids.
Will Ferrell and John C Reilly will reteam for HOLMES AND WATSON, an action-comedy take on Arthur Conan Doyle's iconic sleuth and his doctor sidekick. Etan Cohen is writing and directing.
Keira Knightley has joined the cast of THE NUTCRACKER, a live-action movie based on the 1816 story that inspired Tchaikovsky's ballet. She'll play the Sugar Plum Fairy opposite Mackenzie Foy, Morgan Freeman and Misty Copeland. Lasse Hallstrom is directing.
Meanwhile, Knightley is also lined up to star with Alexander Skarsgard in THE AFTERMATH, based on the bestselling book. The story is set in Germany following the end of World War II. James Kent is directing.
James Marsden, Toby Kebbell and Lucy Punch are joining Sofia Vergara in THE FEMALE BRAIN, a comedy about how brain chemistry affects couples at different stages in their relationships. Whitney Cummings is writing, directing and costarring in the film.
Jason Isaacs has joined the cast of HOTEL MUMBAI, the true story of the 2008 terrorist attack in India that claimed 160 lives. Dev Patel, Armie Hammer and Nazanin Boniadi (Homeland) also star in the film. Director Anthony Maras cowrote the script with John Collee.
Jennifer Carpenter will join Vince Vaughn in CELL BLOCK 99, about a retired boxer at the end of his rope who ends up in a vicious prison after getting mixed up with a drug dealer. S Craig Zahler (Bone Tomahawk) is writing and directing.
Judy Greer, Michael Cera and Brett Geiman will star in LEMON, about an out-of-work actor trying to remain optimistic when he's dumped by his blind girlfriend. Costars include Megan Mullally, Martin Starr, Gillian Jacobs, Nia Long, Jeff Garlin and Rhea Perlman.
Rainn Wilson will join Jason Statham and Fan Bingbing in MEG, a thriller based on the novel about the discovery of a 70-foot-long prehistoric shark off the coast of China. Jon Turteltaub is directing from a script by James Vanderbilt.
And John Turturro is currently filming GOING PLACES, which is both a remake of the 1974 French farce Les Valseuses and a spin-off from The Big Lebowski, as he is reprising his Jesus Quintana character. Turturro is writing, directing and starring alongside Bobby Canavale, Audrey Tautou and Susan Sarandon.
Jennifer Lopez is lined up to play Griselda Blanco, the notorious "Cocaine Godmother" who revolutionised the drug trade between North and South America in the 1970s. Lopez is also producing the film.
Dave Franco, Justin Theroux, Olivia Munn, Jackie Chan, Michael Pena, Kumail Nanjiani, Zach Woods, Fred Arminsen and Abbi Jacobson are lending their voices to THE LEGO NINJAGO MOVIE, about a group of young ninja warriors defending their island home. Charlie Bean is directing.
Berenice Bejo, Louis Garrel, Stacy Martin and Gregory Gadebois are starring in LE REDOUTABLE, which recounts the romance between Anne Wiazemsky and French filmmaker Jean-Luc Godard in tumultuous 1968 Paris. Michel Hazanavicius is directing.
Nia Long and Idina Menzel will star in a remake of BEACHES, which traces the lifelong relationship of an aspiring singer and the daughter of a leading civil rights lawyer. Director Allison Anders started filming this week in Vancouver.
Eva Longoria will produce and probably star in MY DAUGHTER'S QUINCEANERA, about a single dad trying to plan the perfect 15th birthday party for his daughter. Lauren Iungerich (Awkward) is writing and directing.
Kyle Chandler and Mackenzie Davis are lined up to play Cable and Domino in DEADPOOL 2, which will see Ryan Reynolds returning to his fast-talking anti-hero role. Both characters are notorious mutants from Marvel comics, and both are considered to be scene-stealing roles.
Ben Whishaw is joining Emily Blunt, Meryl Streep and Lin-Manuel Miranda in MARY POPPINS RETURNS, the 50-years-later sequel that's a 20-years-later story. Rob Marshall is directing from a script by David Magee.
Scott Eastwood and Matilda Lutz will star in ECSTASIA, a sci-fi romance about a couple living in a society where love has an expiration date. Wayne Kramer (The Cooler) is writing and directing.
Lizzy Caplan will star in FRIEND OF BILL, a black comedy about a writer forced to take a sabbatical to deal with her alcoholism. So she moves back to her small hometown, where she finds herself in a relational mess. Amy Rice is directing from a script by Harper Dill.
And word has it that Donald Glover is lined up to play Lando Calrissian in the STAR WARS spin-off starring Alden Ehrenreich as the young Han Solo. Phil Lord and Christopher Miller are directing.
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The Hollywood Reporter.
ALSO: Ain't It Cool News. British Film Institute. CNN. Empire. Entertainment Weekly. Evening Standard.
Film Threat. The Guardian. indieWire. Screen International. Sight and Sound. Variety.
© 2016 by Rich Cline, Shadows on the Wall
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