The man who brought us Borat, Ali G, and Brüno heads back into the realm of sociopolitical satire in the first trailer for The Dictator, which hit the Web today. Sacha Baron Cohen stars as Middle Eastern despot along the lines of Muammar Gaddafi, who gets sent to the United States in exile and spends his days riding camels down Fifth Avenue, ziplining across Manhattan, and sleeping with Megan Fox. John C. Reilly and Ben Kingsley also star. Watch the first trailer after the jump.

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Ruth Wilson will be breaking into the boys’ club as the female lead of Gore Verbinski‘s The Lone Ranger, starring Armie Hammer as the Texas ranger and Johnny Depp as his sidekick Tonto. Although Wilson’s name may be unfamiliar to most Americans, she’s known in the UK for her work on the BBC’s Luther and the Masterpiece Theatre miniseries Jane Eyre. Wilson was selected over Jessica Chastain and Abbie Cornish, who were also being considered for the part, and is currently in negotiations. Very few details have been revealed about her character, named Rebecca.

Unlike the earlier versions of the property, Verbinski’s Lone Ranger will be told from Tonto’s perspective — “Don Quixote told from Sancho Panza’s point of view,” as Verbinski has described it. The film will hit theaters December 21. [Deadline]

After the jump, B.J. Novak joins The Dictator opposite Sacha Baron Cohen a.k.a. Borat, and Peter Mullan takes on an action thriller.

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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 »

Megan Fox‘s name has come up this week through conversations that are a little bit unsavory (personally, I’m done with the backstage Transformers stuff, inasmuch as it was ever of interest beyond her role being recast) but here’s a better piece of news for the actress.

She and John C. Reilly have both been added to the cast of The Dictator. That’s the new film in which Sacha Baron Cohen and his Borat and Bruno director Larry Charles chronicle the not really true tale of a Middle Eastern despot who ends up in the US, and a goat herder who happens to be his exact double. Read More »

Earlier this week we saw an on-set snap of Sacha Baron Cohen in costume as one of the characters in The Dictator. Now we’ve got the first official look at Sacha Baron Cohen in costume as the other main character in The Dictator. The full snap is after the break. Read More »

For many of us, it’s safe to say that Sacha Baron Cohen has already reached “See anything he’s in” status. Even though he’s only starred in a handful of movies, with some (Borat) being way more successful than others (Bruno), it’s hard to not be totally enthralled when he’s on screen. You’re never sure what he’ll do next.

That’s exactly the vibe we get from the first look at the actor in his latest film, The Dictator, directed by frequent collaborator Larry Charles. It’s scheduled for release May 11, 2012. Check out the full image and learn more about the movie below. Read More »

Sacha Baron Cohen is preparing his next semi-improvised, semi-political comedy. The Dictator, which may or may not be inspired by Charlie Chaplin’s The Great Dictator (bet on ‘may’) has Borat director Larry Charles set to direct from a script by Alec Berg, Jeff Schaffer and David Mandel. The script, which has Sacha Baron Cohen playing dual roles, may or may not be followed to the utmost degree.

Last week we heard about an actress shortlist assembled as producers cast the film’s female lead, and one of the primary concerns for the woman in question was an ability to improvise. So it isn’t much of a surprise that Anna Faris got the nod. She’s now negotiating a deal to appear in the film. Read More »

Not counting his Ali G Show creations and the trio of feature efforts that followed, Sacha Baron Cohen‘s winning presence has been put to use in only two films thus far, first in Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby and not long after in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street. That’s going to be changing in the next couple of years though, as he adds two more films to his roster — the appreciably shorter-titled Hugo Cabret (directed by Martin Scorsese) and The Dictator.

We’ve already gotten an early peek at Cohen in Hugo Cabret, along with his Academy Award-winning co-star Ben Kingsley, and now a new bit of casting for The Dictator informs us that the duo will be joining forces once again. Is this the result of Cohen and Kingsley sharing strong chemistry on-set? We can only hope. Learn more after the break. Read More »

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