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At least half of getting a movie right is casting. And Nicolas Winding Refn seems to really be getting Drive right so far. He’s got Ryan Gosling starring, and Bryan Cranston and Carey Mulligan in supporting roles. That’s three hits right there, no strikes.

And now he’s lined up something of a left-field choice to play the badass in the film: Albert Brooks? If you’re anything like me, your reaction to this probably went from ‘huh?’ to ‘yeah!’ in about two seconds.

Deadline says that Brooks will play “Bernie Rose, a transplanted New York mobster who comes to LA and is not to be messed with.” This isn’t the first sorta bad-guy turn from Brooks (think of his Out of Sight role) but I believe it is his first time playing a full-on villain. Be excited; this could be a hell of a lot of fun. There’s enough of an undercurrent of mean in some of Brooks’ other work that I can see this looking almost too natural from him.

I can’t offer too much extra detail on his role (and others) but I’m going to read the script tonight, so next time we report on the film I’ll be able to paint a better picture of what everyone is playing.

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