Liam Neeson may need nothing more than broken minibar bottles to face off against a wild wolf in The Grey, but I doubt even he could go hand-to-hand with a 700-pound grizzly bear all by himself. No, to battle a creature that big, you’d need at least three people — like, say, James Marsden, Thomas Jane, and Billy Bob Thornton. The three actors are now set to star in a man vs. thriller titled Red Machine, from Saw V director David Hackl. More details after the jump.

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Last week we dropped the red-band trailer for I Melt With You, Mark Pellington‘s incredibly divisive thriller about four longtime pals (Rob Lowe, Tom Jane, Jeremy Piven, and Christian McKay) who get together once a year for debauched, drug-fueled gatherings. Underlying the merriment, however, is a deeply disturbing secret that could change all of their lives.

If that trailer’s NSFW cursing and drug usage stopped you from checking it out last time, don’t worry — we have a green-band trailer for you today that’s pretty much the same thing with the F-bombs and cocaine edited out. Check it out after the jump.

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There are films I want to watch because they’re universally beloved, others I want to watch out of a morbid curiosity because they’re widely reviled, and then, occasionally, there are those that pique my curiosity because they seem to be a little bit of both. Perhaps the most divisive film out of this year’s Sundance was Mark Pellington‘s I Melt With You, a dramatic thriller about four longtime male friends (Rob Lowe, Tom Jane, Jeremy Piven, and Christian McKay) suffering from midlife crises who escape together for debauched gatherings. Which makes it sound like a crappy Tim Allen comedy, but apparently it’s all very serious and there’s a disturbing twist that turns the film into something deeply fucked up. Watch the red-band trailer and see the poster after the jump.

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Thomas Jane isn’t a particularly cautious guy when acting as an interview subject, which is what makes him so much fun to talk to. (See also: Shia LaBeouf.) And he’s certainly got stuff to talk about now, because until recently he was meant to co-star in the film once called Headshot, which Walter Hill will direct with Sylvester Stallone playing the lead role. The film has lost that title, and it also lost Thomas Jane at some recent point.

The scuttlebutt was that Joel Silver had wanted to follow what he saw as the buddy-movie formula, and so cut Thomas Jane loose in favor of a non-white actor. Turns out that was exactly the case, and Thomas Jane talks about that, as well as his new werewolf movie, after the break. Read More »

Gossip Girl actor Penn Badgley has been tapped to star as Jeff Buckley in a new biopic about the singer-songwriter. No, not that one — the other one. In true Hollywood fashion, there are currently two Buckley-based projects in the works: the one Jake Scott’s making with Buckley’s mother Mary Guibert as executive producer, and this one, directed by Daniel Algrant (Naked in New York). Scott’s film will be look at Buckley’s (tragically brief) life and career arc, whereas Algrant’s will focus on Buckley’s breakthrough performance at a 1991 tribute concert for his father, the late Tim Buckley. According to The Playlist, Algrant’s will also include a romance between Buckley and a working at the concert.

I really only know Badgley from Easy A and the handful of Gossip Girl episodes I’ve seen, and I can’t say he’s ever left a strong impression on me. (Well — I hated his Gossip Girl character, but that’s probably less his fault than the writers’.) So I can’t say whether this will be a good thing or a bad thing. Either way, there’s a chance he’ll be going up against fellow teen heartthrob Robert Pattinson, who’s still rumored to be circling the corresponding role in Scott’s movie. [24 Frames]

After the jump, rising star Andrea Riseborough wins the female lead in Welcome to the Punch, and Fairly Legal‘s Sarah Shahi signs on for Walter Hill’s next project.

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The Sylvester Stallone film Headshot, which adapts the Matz and Colin Wilson graphic novel Bullet to the Head, became a bit more promising than just another action film when Walter Hill signed on to replace Wayne Kramer as director. Mr. Hill hasn’t made a great many movies in the past twenty years, but on the basis of classics like The Warriors, 48 Hrs. and The Driver, we have to be hopeful for a comeback.

Now Joel Silver‘s Dark Castle Entertainment has partnered with IM Global and After Dark Films on the project, which also means that Warner Bros. will distribute the final product. It will, however, go out with a different title. Read More »

Mel Gibson to Star in ‘Sleight of Hand’?

The Beaver may not have been quite the comeback that Mel Gibson wanted, but it was probably the comeback that he deserved. Still, signs point to the fact that the film’s relative under-performance is due less to disdain for the actor and more towards a general sense of disinterest and lack of awareness about the film. For real comeback action Mel Gibson will probably have to work in a genre that has more potential for audience impact. How about some form of buddy comedy — that being the format that defined one stage of his career thanks to the Lethal Weapon films? Indeed, he is now in talks to join the buddy heist comedy Sleight of Hand, which has Kiefer Sutherland, Gerard Depardieu and Thomas Jane set for smaller roles. Read More »

Let’s tackle these in reverse order from the headline. Last week rumors emerged that Sylvester Stallone would direct The Expendables 2 after all. (Several months back it had been announced that he would not write or direct.) The rumor showed up via a BoxOfficeMojo tweet, and was reportedly sourced from LionsGate, which distributed the first film. I contacted the studio, which said that nothing was confirmed.

Now Deadline indirectly but definitively reports a statement from Sly that he “wants it known that despite reports to the contrary, he will not be directing the sequel to The Expendables.” So that remains that. The script is in, and now we’ll wait to see who is tapped to direct, what cast members will return, and who’ll be added. Maybe the experience of directing Sylvester Stallone in Headshot will go so well that Walter Hill will do The Expandables sequel as well? More info on Headshot, which Thomas Jane has just joined, after the break. Read More »

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