Cumberbatch Knightley

Benedict Cumberbatch sure does love movies about technology. He stars as WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange in The Fifth Estate;Star Trek is based around technological advancement; and now the Sherlock star will play one of the most famous computer scientists and codebreakers in history. Leonardo DiCaprio was circling the filmThe Imitation Game, a while back, but the role went to Cumberbatch.

Production has just begun on The Imitation Game, directed by Morten Tyldum (Headhunters). It tells the story of Alan Turing, a British computer pioneer who is (among many other achievements) credited with cracking a top-secret German code during World War II. Cumberbatch plays the lead (which we already knew), Keira Knightley is a fellow code-breaker, and they’re joined by Matthew Goode, Mark Strong and Rory Kinnear.

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As you head into the weekend, we’ve got a few last sequel-related tidbits to chew on. After the jump:

  • Warner Bros. limited The Hobbit‘s 48 fps rollout to “do it right”
  • The Hobbit‘s Dori pledges himself to England’s Prince Charles
  • Will Breaking Dawn Parts I and II be re-released as one movie?
  • Paramount is pushing for Transformers 4 to be set in China
  • Keira Knightley says Jack Ryan wraps shooting in December
  • Chris Pine has vague comments about Star Trek Into Darkness

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After a couple years of trying to get the film together, Paramount finally has a loose release window for Jack Ryan, the latest film to adapt the character from Tom Clancy novels such as The Hunt For Red October and Patriot Games, and the first to feature Chris Pine as a younger version of the character. (He’s the fourth actor to play Ryan, following Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford, and Ben Affleck.) The studio waited to move forward until Pine was done with the Star Trek sequel, and will be able to get the new Ryan movie shooting soon.

Update: Paramount set a release date of December 25th, 2013 for Jack Ryan, confirming a strong sense of enthusiasm for the picture. We’ll see if that changes if the late Dec. release for Jack Reacher, clearly hoping to replicate the success of Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, doesn’t work this year. Original article follows after the break.

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Keira Knightley Lands Female Lead in Jack Ryan Reboot

Really, any of the women on Paramount’s shortlist for the female lead in their Jack Ryan prequel could’ve made for a fine choice. But director Kenneth Branagh had to narrow down the options sooner or later, and the one he’s going with is Keira Knightley.

The Brit actress has just entered talks to star as Jack Ryan’s wife, a role previously portrayed by Anne Archer, Gates McFadden, and Bridget Moynahan in previous installments of the franchise. Knightley joins Chris Pine, who’s long been attached to play the lead role, and Branagh, who in addition to directing will also star as the villain. More details after the jump.

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Paramount’s Jack Ryan reboot has had its share of false starts, but the fact that it’s finally begun casting in earnest can only be a positive sign. Chris Pine‘s been attached to play the beloved Tom Clancy creation for years, but he’s been all alone in the spotlight.

That changed a few weeks ago when director Kenneth Branagh (who got the helming gig back in March) cast himself as the villain, and now he’s narrowing down the possibilities for the female lead role as well. On that short list are Keira Knightley, Felicity Jones, and Evangeline Lilly. More after the jump.

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If last month’s first trailer for Anna Karenina gave us an intriguing taste of the sumptuous theatricality of Joe Wright‘s adaptation, this new six-minute clip offers a big, juicy bite. As Wright explains in the introductory voiceover, nearly the entire film was filmed on over a hundred sets, nearly all constructed inside a single dilapidated theater. And he takes full advantage of the setting, turning what could’ve been a staid period drama into something rich, ambitious, and altogether unique.

Historical romance queen Keira Knightley stars as the title character, a 19th century Russian aristocrat who enters into a passionate and destructive affair with the charismatic Count Vronsky (Aaron Taylor-Johnson). Watch the clip after the jump.

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Joe Wright moved from the stately but intense period piece Atonement to the violent modern fairy tale Hanna without missing a step, and now he has danced back to period form with an adaptation of Leo Tolstoy‘s classic romance Anna Karenina. ‘Danced’ is exactly the word to use, as Wright shot most of the film on a single soundstage, and there is a very theatrical look to the sumptuous footage. If you hear a distant vibration, that’s Baz Luhrmann quaking with envy, and awards-season fear.

Tom Stoppard (Brazil, Shakespeare in Love, Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead) scripted, and the film stars Keira Knightley, Jude Law, Aaron Johnson, and Kelly Macdonald, with Matthew Macfadyen, Domhnall Gleeson, Alicia Vikander, Emily Watson, Olivia Williams and Ruth Wilson.

Check out the footage below.

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Emma Watson and Daniel Radcliffe aren’t the only former Harry Potter stars getting their post-Hogwarts careers on. After the jump, Rupert Grint and Tom Felton find new roles, along with Chloe Grace Moretz and Keira Knightley in this mostly British edition of Casting Bits.

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