Casting Notes: Cheadle And Gleeson, Witherspoon Is #1, And Djimon Hounsou Works With Ong Bak Director

Here's your blast of casting bites for the end of the week. First up, Don Cheadle and Brendan Gleeson will team as unlikely cop partners in The Guard. Film follows the confrontational small-town Sgt. Gerry Boyle (Gleeson), who likes hookers and isn't interested in drug runners, and FBI Agent Everett (Cheadle) in a tale of international coke smuggling. Sounds on the surface like an Irish reversal of Beverly Hills Cop, where the small-town local guy is the irreverent jokester while the outsider is terribly straightlaced. John Michael McDonagh writes and directs. If it weren't for the cast, and the fact that it takes place in Ireland (not even sure why that's a draw) I'd be brushing this one off already. [ComingSoon]

After the break, Reese Witherspoon demonstrates the first rule and Djimon Hounsou kicks some ass.

Reese Witherspoon will produce and star in Rule #1, a tidy little dramedy about "a New York woman who befriends a Puerto Rican girl with attention deficit disorder." Script is by Terrel Seltzer, who wrote How I Got Into College and co-wrote the George Clooney movie that almost everyone has forgotten, One Fine Day. Get excited for this one. No? OK, I can see that. [THR]

Finally, and I wish we knew a lot more about this one, Djimon Hounsou will be working with Ong Bak and Chocolate director Prachya Pinkaew on the film White Elephant. Hounsou will be an assassin hired to avenge the murder of a businessman's daughter at the hands of white slave traders. The film will shoot in Bangkok in March. Prachya Pinkaew and Ong Bak choreographer Panna Rittikrai also have the english-language film City of Angels in development. That one was just announced a week or so ago, so we'll see which of the two goes into production first. [Variety]