Ron Howard and Tom Hanks are returning to the world of Dan Brown, but not in the way you’d think. Sony has decided to skip The Lost Symbol, Brown’s third novel about Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon, and move ahead with adapting his current best-seller, Inferno.

A film based on the latest novel, which was released in May, has been given a December 18, 2015 release date. Both the star and director of the first two films, The Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons, are expected to return. David Koepp, who adapted the last film, will write the screenplay.  Read More »


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In the past few weeks, biopics have been the source of the weirdest casting news. Ashton Kutcher is playing Steve Jobs, and Jane Fonda is playing Nancy Reagan. Now a casting choice that seemed like a PR stunt when first mentioned — Lindsay Lohan playing Elizabeth Taylor in a Lifetime movie — has come to pass, while Taylor Swift is said to be lining up to play folk and feminist icon Joni Mitchell.

On the other side of casting news, Malin Akerman is doubtful that she’ll really get the chance to play a different feminist icon, one-time porn star Linda Lovelace, in Inferno. And Eric Bana is no longer attached to play Elvis.  Read More »

Today’s Casting Bits all revolve around true stories, though the nature of the tales vary wildly from project to project. After the jump:

  • Adam Goldberg enters final negotiations to play porn star Harry Reems in Matthew Wilder’s Inferno
  • Patricia Arquette gets cast as Reeve Carney’s mom in Jake Scott’s Jeff Buckley biopic
  • Matthew Fox boards Peter Webber’s “inspired by true events” political thriller Emperor

Read More »

Sharon Stone was a big deal in the ’90s thanks to Basic Instinct in 1992, but she’s got a lower profile lately. She’s been working very steadily, but it doesn’t feel that way. I can’t remember the last time I saw a memorable Stone performance. Probably either Broken Flowers (’05) or Alpha Dog (’06). Law & Order: SVU fans would probably point to her recurring role on that show. I don’t know if anyone would point to Basic Instinct 2 (’06) even though the image above makes her appearance in that one look like a different version of the X-Men’s Emma Frost.

She might get more attention playing the mother of a porn star. Stone is now set to play the mother of Linda Lovelace (possibly played by Amanda Seyfried) in Lovelace. That’s one of two Linda Lovelace films in development right now, and the one that will be directed by Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman (Howl). Peter Sarsgaard is in talks to play Lovelace’s husband an accused pimp and abuser Chuck Traynor. Andy Bellin and W. Merritt Johnson scripted based on the book The Complete Linda Lovelace by Eric Danville. [AP]

(The other Linda Lovelace film is Matthew Wilder’s Inferno: A Linda Lovelace Story.)

After the break, find casting info for an indie called Wild Oats, and Ezra Miller’s denial that he has anything to do with WB’s Akira. Read More »

One of the better-received films at this year’s Sundance was Take Shelter, starring Michael Shannon and Jessica Chastain. The film is playing to good reviews at Cannes now as well, and the writer/director, Jeff Nichols, is prepping his second film. Mud, as the picture is called, has Chris Pine in talks to star as Mud, a fugitive that is assisted in his escape from an island in the Mississippi river by two 14-year old boys.

The LA Times has the news, and says, “the ambiguity of the story lies with Mud, who is both an unsavory and a redemptive character and who teaches the boys as much as he learns from them,” making the obvious and obligatory Huck Finn reference immediately afterward. Stand By Me is also name-dropped. The reviews for Take Shelter are all I need to be interested in what Jeff Nichols does next, and picking Chris Pine for a definitively non-blockbuster sort of role sounds like a good move.

After the break, Matt Dillon may beat up a pretend Linda Lovelace, and a shortlist emerges for the Great Gatsby role that Ben Affleck had to give up. Read More »

Today has seen major developments for the TV version of the graphic novel Locke & Key. Earlier director Mark Romanek was revealed to be in talks to helm the pilot episode of the Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci-produced adaptation of Joe Hill‘s work. Josh Friedman (Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles) serves as showrunner and pilot scriptwriter.

Now Miranda Otto has been tapped as one of the leads. She’ll play Nina Locke, who with her three children tries to rebuild a life in Lovecraft, MA. Keyhouse, their family home, is riddled with secrets and filled with keys that are being sought by a hate-filled creature. [Deadline]

After the break, the recent troubles of Lindsay Lohan have forced producers of Inferno to recast the role of Linda Lovelace. Read More »

Oh noes. With The House Bunny nom’ing on close to $50 million at the box office, Anna Faris dished to MovieHole that she’s dropped out of the 2009 Linda Lovelace biopic Inferno to focus on comedies. Damn you, smart business sense. Over the summer, Faris expressed enthusiasm in playing Lovelace, troubled “star” of the infamous fellatio pic, Deep Throat, who later became an anti-porn crusader and died in a car accident. “You’re not going to even know who I am…I’ll be in a very dark place,” Faris said in June.

Inferno has experienced troubles with funding, so we expected it to be all-systems-go now that Faris is a proven mainstream draw. New lead permitting, the film will be the sophomore effort of director, Matthew Wilder, who helmed the cool-looking pseudo-Philip K. Dick flick, Your Name Here, with Bull Pullman—which still hasn’t seen a domestic release. Sam Rockwell is set to co-star as one of Lovelace’s abusive husbands.

Discuss: What actress would be as intriguing for the role as Faris?

Slashfilm is so tawdry today. The last time I recall reading about Inferno, the Linda Lovelace/Deep Throat biopic with Anna Faris set to star, Vulture was getting lashed by Faris’s dad for making bad puns. Faris now tells MTV that the film, a seedy departure for the goofy comedienne (Smiley Face, the Scary Movies), will likely begin shooting this summer with Slashfilm fave, Sam Rockwell (real name), apparently aboard to play her husband.

“I’m going to do ['Observe & Report' with Seth Rogen] first, and then hopefully we’ll get together for the summer. …You’re not going to even know who I am,” she half-joked. “I’m not there right now, but I will be when the time comes. I’ll be in a very dark place.”

The movie will be directed by newcomer Matthew Wilder (real name) whose quasi-Philip K. Dick (real name) biopic, Your Name Here, starring Bill Pullman (real name/bad pun) opens this year. We’ll post the trailer for that one shortly. It’s jammed econo with enough ’70s duds, nude hugs and drugs to light a path for Inferno‘s American tale of kinky debasement, relentless exploitation and sniffled redemption.

In her early 20s, Lovelace (real name/bad pun, Linda Boreman) starred in Deep Throat, the lil’ porno funded by the mob that became a worldwide theatrical/socio-political sensation in 1972. Its broad influence was examined in the 2002 doc, Inside Deep Throat. She was married to two guys widely described as abusive sleazebag opportunists (Rockwell would play the second one), and later led an anti-pornography crusade of sorts, decrying that much of Deep Throat was filmed against her will. She died in 2002, the result of a car accident. The subject matter isn’t too fresh, but I think Faris would be enticingly insane for this role, far stranger than Val Kilmer as John Holmes in Wonderland.

Discuss: Does Faris + Rockwell get you interested?

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