With Ruben Fleischer‘s Gangster Squad hitting theaters today, Warner Bros. is squeezing in one last extended trailer. Based on true events, the drama follows a special force of LAPD officers who are tasked with breaking the mob’s iron grip on the city of Los Angeles. The new three-minute promo offers looks at Josh Brolin and Ryan Gosling‘s incorruptible cops, but it mostly highlights Sean Penn‘s scenery-chewing performance as gangster king Mickey Cohen. Watch it after the jump.

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If I needed to I could come up with two films more different than Kathryn Bigelow‘s “kill Osama Bin Laden” movie Zero Dark Thirty and Atom Egoyan‘s West Memphis Three drama Devil’s Knot. But for the sake of argument let’s note that despite being fiction based in truth, they’re still pretty seriously different projects.Both films do have one other thing in common, in that they will rely on relative unknowns for pivotal roles.

First, Kathryn Bigelow’s Zero Dark Thirty, which recounts the successful attempt to kill Osama Bin Laden, will actually feature an actor as the terrorist figurehead — something we weren’t sure about at one point. Ricky Sekhon, a British actor with some TV experience, will play the part. He’s already shot the role, according to Baz Bamigoye.

The film is still shooting, however, with a December 19th opening planned. The cast also features Chris Pratt, Kyle Chandler, Jessica Chastain, Jennifer Ehle, Joel Edgerton, Nash Edgerton, Frank Grillo, Harold Perrineau Jr., Mark Duplass, Jason Clarke, Mark Strong, Edgar Ramirez , and more.

After the break, Atom Egoyan has chosen a newcomer to play Damien Echols, one of the convicted West Memphis Three. Read More »

Nick Nolte Joins ‘Gangster Squad’

Briefly: Here’s one more reason to be excited about Ruben Fleischer‘s upcoming ’40s-set LA ‘cops vs. mobsters’ story Gangster Squad. Nick Nolte is taking a role in the film; he’ll be Bill Parker, “the new chief of police in Los Angeles,” and a Chief who isn’t in the pocket of big-time LA gangster Mickey Cohen (Sean Penn). The character is a WWII vet and the guy who gives the gangster squad its mandate to bust Cohen and other organized crime goons.

Nolte joins a cast that also includes Ryan Gosling, Josh Brolin, Emma Stone, Anthony Mackie, Michael Peña, Mirielle Enos, Giovanni Ribisi, Holt McCallany, Robert Patrick, Frank Grillo and Sullivan Stapleton. I don’t know exactly what has Nick Nolte showing up all over the place lately, but I love it. He’s in the David Milch/Michael Mann HBO show Luck, as well as the upcoming films Warrior (pictured above), Parker and The Company You Keep. [Deadline]

Here’s a lovers and spouses collection of casting news, leading off with a nice change of pace report of an actor being cast as the ‘love interest’ for a major actress, rather than the other way around. After the break you’ll find:

  • Matt Dillon will woo Anette Bening in Imogene,
  • The Killing actress Mireille Enos joins Gangster Squad,
  • Stephanie Szostak cozies up to Ryan Reynolds in RIPD,
  • and some of the Jersey Shore knuckleheads appear with famous fictional whackos The Three Stooges.

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‘World War Z’ to Shoot in Glasgow This August

After being stuck in development for years, World War Z found a new life this past spring when additional financing saved the project from being shut down altogether. Since then, the project’s been fast-tracked — likely in order to beat the deadline before Paramount’s short, expensive option runs out. Based on the bestselling novel by Max Brooks, Marc Forster‘s film will star Brad Pitt (who’s also producing), James Badge Dale, Anthony Mackie and Mireille Enos. Production begins this month, but it sounds as though a large chunk of the film will be shot in Glasgow this August. More details after the jump.

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Ben Affleck bailed on acting in Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby in order to direct his third film, a picture called Argo. (Good choice!) The film is from a Chris Terrio script that follows a true-life story about a CIA effort to pull diplomats out of Tehran in 1979. The hook: they use a plan that has them posing as a Hollywood studio crew making a sci-fi film called Argo. (Much more background detail is here.)

The first piece of casting (other than Ben Affleck, who is taking a role) is now out: Alan Arkin will play Lester Siegel, the OSS agent turned film producer who is key to the plan. The role is described as “equal parts bookie and rabbi,” in which case Alan Arkin is perfect. But then, when is he not close to perfect? George Clooney and Grant Heslov are producing the film, and if that conjures up images of the tone of Men Who Stare At Goats — another partially true military/political tale — then you’re probably thinking along the right track. Only, let’s hope, better. [Variety]

After the break, World War Z and the G.I. Joe sequel get new cast additions. Read More »

AMC’s new series The Killing premiered not too long ago to rave reviews from critics, and already its stars are benefiting from the exposure. Either that, or this is simply proving to be a very fortunate time in their careers.

First up in casting news is Mireille Enos, who centers The Killing as its know-it-all detective Sarah Linden. She’s in talks to star alongside Brad Pitt in World War Z, the adaptation of Max Brooks‘ zombie bestseller that only recently was recently fast-tracked by Paramount after countless delays and financial troubles. She would play Karin Lane, the wife of Gerard Lane (played by Pitt) and mother of his two children. This marks her first major studio starring role, having otherwise had only a three-season stint on Big Love and a number of bit TV roles. [Deadline] Read More »

AMC Television has officially announced that they have made a full series order for the ilot that was formerly known as The Killing, from writer and executive producer Veena Sud (Cold Case). They have also passed along the first production photo from the yet-to-be-officially titled crime thriller series. Read the full press release after the jump.
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