Last season, FX’s boxing drama Lights Out entered the canon of brilliant-but-cancelled television series, when piss-poor ratings brought about its demise despite plenty of critical love. Thankfully, things seem to be working out better for the series’ acclaimed star, Holt McCallany, than they did for the show.

The actor is now in talks for Gangster Squad, Ruben Fleischer‘s highly anticipated (well, by us) period cop drama. McCallany would be joining an absolutely top-notch cast which already includes Sean Penn, Ryan Gosling, Josh Brolin, Anthony Mackie, Michael Peña, and Giovanni Ribisi, with Bryan Cranston in negotiations. How can you not get excited with a cast like that?

Based on a series of articles by Paul Lieberman, Gangster Squad tells the story of an LAPD task force which was formed to fight organized crime and corruption in 1940s Los Angeles. Gosling, Brolin, Mackie, and Cranston will be on the LAPD side; Penn will play real-life mob boss Mickey Cohen. McCallany is eyeing the part of Cohen’s bodyguard. Production for Gangster Squad will begin September 7. [Variety]

After the jump, Julia Stiles and America Ferrera team up, Dennis Quaid gets a much younger wife, and Jennifer Love Hewitt and Ivan Sergei find love.

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Summer time is sequel time. For the purposes of this particular article, it’s the time for sequels that don’t exist yet and, for all we know, may never exist. But Zombieland 2, Jurassic Park 4 and Gremlins 3 are all films that come up in conversation with filmmakers on a semi-regular basis. We’ve got the latest updates on all three below. A hint: don’t warm up the popcorn just yet. Read More »

We’ve got classic cops fighting notorious gangsters, giant mechs fighting notorious monsters, and a despot and his double fighting…um…the boundaries of comedy? Something along those lines. After the break, check out details of the following three recent casting breaks:

  • Giovanni Ribisi joins the impressive cast of Gangster Squad.
  • Rinko Kikuchi takes the female lead in Pacific Rim.
  • J.B. Smoove is added to The Dictator. Read More »

Bryan Cranston Cast in ‘Gangster Squad’

What did I just say hours ago about Bryan Cranston being on a tear? He’s just in the process of taking a role in Argo, the new film that Ben Affleck will direct. And now he’s in talks for Gangster Squad, a film that Ben Affleck was offered to direct before Argo came into being. Read More »

’30 Minutes or Less’ Red-Band Trailer #2

I’m going to ignore any questions of taste and/or ethics that might possibly be involved in turning a violent, very messed up real-life robbery into, well, a slightly messed-up comedy. Instead I’m just going to take a moment to appreciate the fact that this second red-band trailer for Ruben Fleischer‘s Zombieland follow-up 30 Minutes or Less makes the film look pretty damn funny. It’s got one of the better kickers to end a trailer in some time. Check it out below. Read More »

Anthony Mackie Joins ‘Gangster Squad’

Briefly: Zombieland director Ruben Fleischer is just not messing around when it comes to the cast of his new film, Gangster Squad. The film, scripted by LA cop Will Beall and formerly reffered to as Tales From the Gangster Squad, is based on a series of articles in the LA Times that recounted efforts of a ’40s LAPD squad to curtail the influx of organized crime in Los Angeles.

Sean Penn (as Mickey Cohen), Josh Brolin, Ryan Gosling and Michael Peña were already in the cast and now Anthony Mackie has joined, too. He’s been rumored for this one (and for World War Z), but now he’s locked Gangster Squad. He’ll play Rocky Washington, ex-cop and the first black lieutenant in the LAPD, who is ultimately recruited to work as part of the gangster squad. Just when conventional wisdom says that a major studio will never fund an adult-oriented film like this, we get a period piece, with this cast. Cross your fingers that it works better than Public Enemies… [Variety]

An up and comer, a recognizable character actor and a seasoned veteran have all signed on to very different projects. The up and comer, Kodi Smit-McPhee, best known for his awesome work in The Road and Let Me In, is reportedly circling the role of Benvolio in Carlo Carlei‘s new film adaptation of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet along side Haliee Steinfeld, Holly Hunter and Ed Westwick. Michael Pena, the recognizable character actor, has joined the already impressive cast of Gangster Squad, Ruben Fleischer‘s upcoming true-life gangster film starring Sean Penn, Ryan Gosling and Josh Brolin. Then the seasoned veteran, Corbin Bernsen joins the female-centric gambling story Lay the Favorite starring Bruce Willis, Vince Vaughn and Rebecca Hall directed by Stephen Frears. Read about each film, and role, after the break. Read More »

A slew of new clips were released over the weekend, offering better looks at possible future summer blockbusters Green Lantern, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, and 30 Minutes or Less. Whether you want to see the gorgeous world of Oa, an evil alien robot copy machine, or Aziz Ansari molding the future leaders of tomorrow, we’ve got something for you. (If you want none of those things, though, you’re out of luck.) See the clips after the jump.

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