First Look: Russell Brand as Arthur

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Splash News has gotten the first shot of a beardless Russell Brand in costume/make-up for the upcoming remake of the 1981 comedy Arthur. Production is currently under way in New York City.

The original ’80s film focused on class, alcoholism and romance, and starred Dudley Moore and Liza Minelli. Brand is on board to play a wealthy drunk playboy who is set to “inherit a fortune if he marries an heiress his family thinks will make something out of him.”

Helen Mirren will play Arthur’s longtime nanny, who replaces the valet character from the original film. John Gielgud won a best supporting actor Oscar for his performance as Arthur’s foil in the 1981 original. So it is possible that Mirren sees the same performance possibilities in this new character. Greta Gerwig (Greenberg, The House of the Devil) is signed on to play Liza Minelli’s old role, the charming blue-collar shoplifter who Arthur falls for. Jennifer Garner will play a character played by Jill Eikenberry in the original — the wealthy heiress “who’s insecure about her humble background and is about to marry the title character in an arranged marriage.” Nick Nolte is also on board.

Jason Winer, who executive produces and directs many episodes of the show Modern Family, is attached to direct. Peter Baynham, who works with Sacha Baron Cohen (he was a story writer on Borat and Bruno) is writing the script.

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