Neil LaBute’s career has taken him to some crazy places. He started off with the visceral and brutal In the Company of Men and followed that up with more films sharing the same dark humor, honestly and venom. At some point though, things changed and he became more of a mainstream director with films like Lakeview Terrace and the abysmal The Wicker Man and Death at a Funeral remakes. It seemed like his talent for inciting controversy had gone away.

It now seems like he’s attempting to blend those more mainstream sensibilities with his earlier independence as he’s set to reteam with the star of his earlier films, Aaron Eckhart, as well as Ed Harris, for The Geography of Hope. The script was written by LaBute, well before he achieved success, and follows two thieves who flee to Mexico only to find another problem: whether to rob or romance all the beautiful women they meet. Read more after the jump. Read More »

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The Tom Hanks company Playtone is putting together Game Change, in which Julianne Moore will play Sarah Palin under the direction of Jay Roach (Austin Powers). The film follows the 2008 Presidential election, and Ed Harris plays John McCain. Now Ron Livingston has been cast as Mark Wallace, senior advisor to the McCain-Palin ticket. In other words, he gets to play the guy who coached Sarah Palin for her debates, and so his scenes with Julianne Moore could be gold. And, no, this movie is not a comedy. At least, I don’t think it is. [Deadline]

Next up is casting for an action/revenge film called Recoil. These two casting announcements couldn’t be more different, but how great would it be to combine them into one film? Anyway, more Recoil news after the break. Read More »

A new trailer has been released for WWE Studios’ That’s What I Am, starring Ed Harris, Amy Madigan, Molly Parker — and professional wrestler Randy Orton. Yup, it’s that WWE. The gargantuan sports entertainment corporation has been producing features through its filmmaking arm since 2002, including The Scorpion King (as co-producers), The Marine, and last year’s Legendary. That’s What I Am looks like a bit of a departure from the company’s earlier projects, in that it doesn’t seem to feature much in the way of action or wrestling. Watch the trailer after the jump.

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Ed Harris has joined HBO’s Game Change, to play the John McCain to Julianne Moore’s Sarah Palin. The film is an adaptation of the bestselling nonfiction book Game Change: Obama and the Clintons, McCain and Palin, and the Race of a Lifetime by political journalists John Heilemann and Mark Halperin, about the 2008 presidential race. Game Change reunites director Jay Roach and screenwriter Danny Strong, who previously won Emmys for their work on HBO’s Recount.

I liked the casting of Moore as Palin, and Harris as McCain seems like a good fit too. Not only is Harris an excellent actor, he actually does kind of look like the movie-star version of McCain, don’t you think? This project is sounding better and better as more names get attached. Casting for other major roles, including that of eventual victor (SPOILER ALERT) Barack Obama, have yet to be announced. [EW]

After the jump, How I Met Your Mother star and budding director Josh Radnor picks up a love interest for his new project.

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Ryan Reynolds and Denzel Washington will soon shoot Safe House, in which a CIA trainee (Reynolds) has to transport a criminal (Washington) who is under fire from other enemies. Daniel Espinosa (Snabba Cash) is directing from a script by David Guggenheim. Now the film picked up four more actors: Brendan Gleeson, Robert Patrick, Sam Shepard and Liam Cunningham. No word on the roles for the quartet, but I hope they play the team trying to take down Denzel.

The film shoots starting next week, and has a February 10, 2012 release date. [Variety]

After the break, Ed Harris and Diane Keaton book a new film, Ari Folman’s The Congress gets one more, and a Glee cast member gets his own caper movie. Read More »

Years ago, the idea of Brendan Fraser working with Neil LaBute would have been appealing. In 1998 it would have been the guy from Gods & Monsters being directed by the firebrand behind Your Friends and Neighbors. Good stuff. Now, well, it’s the guy from Furry Vengeance directed by the guy behind The Wicker Man. Not such an easy sell.

Still, let optimism reign. Brendan Fraser will star in Seconds of Pleasure, the new film Neil LaBute, about which details are non-existent. All we know is it will shoot in the UK this March. Alongside him will be Kristin Scott Thomas, with possible additions Colin Firth and Ed Harris. So that’s quite a solid cast if things come together. I’d love to see both these men make a good film  again, so fingers are crossed. [Deadline]

After the break, that Kevin James MMA film gets a director. Read More »

Movie Trailer #2: ‘The Way Back’

In the past few weeks we’ve started to see footage from The Way Back, which marks the return of great Australian director Peter Weir. Our last look at the film (besides the poster) was a UK trailer that was a good introduction to the story of escapees from a Siberian gulag trying to make their way to safety. Now Newmarket films has released a US trailer for the film, which will get an Oscar-qualifying run in December before opening for real on January 21. Read More »

And the first photo from Man on a Ledge, which just began shooting with Sam Worthington starring as the titular character, shows…Sam Worthington on a ledge. How appropriate. Ed Harris has joined the cast, too, which makes this talent lineup a bit more interesting. More info on Asger Leth‘s in-progress film after the break. Read More »

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