Casting Calls

Thanks for checking out Casting Calls, a weekly roundup of all the notable roles that actors and actresses have scored for upcoming films. As always, we will try to avoid rumors, and stick to roles that have been locked down or are in the negotiation stage.

In this weeks edition, Vince Vaughn takes a risk, two generations action stars unite, “Saving Mr. Banks” adds a trio of actors, and more.

So hit the jump to see who got what gig!

After a couple of huge weeks in casting news, this was a pretty average week. Kicking things off this week, Vince Vaughn has secured the rights to adopt the Ridley Pearson novel The Risk Agent. The film will be produced through Vaughn’s Wild West Picture Show Productions.

Official Synopsis:
"Edward" Lu Hao has disappeared along with his bookkeeping of bribes he'd been paying out for an American multinational operating in Shanghai, China. The woman who'd helped Eddy win the job, Grace Chu, contracts out as a forensic accountant for an international security firm. Because of her connections, and her involvement, Grace is tasked with vetting the accounting of the multinational and finding Edward Lu's missing books.

John Knox, an import/export entrepreneur with friends in the same security company is recruited as a Shanghai insider to deliver the ransom and/or extract the hostage. But the China Knox knows so well is not the China he finds himself in. Immersed in a city of twenty million, with twenty million stories and twenty million motives, Knox and Grace team up to try to free multiple hostages, whatever the risk.

The stakes mount as fast as the lies. Dead ends are as common as hand carts on a Shanghai morning. With no one to trust, and nowhere to turn, Knox and Grace face unexpected hardship and unimagined enemies, with the "solution" anything but certain.
Vaughn will star in the film, and produce it alongside Sandra J. Smith and Victoria Vaughn.

Next up, Sam Worthington has begun talks to join the film “Breacher”. The film was previously called “Ten”. For a while, it looked like Worthington was on the fast track to superstardom around 2009/10. The guy was headlining every major franchise to come out from “Avatar”, to “Clash of the Titans”, to “Terminator Salvation”. I remember a joke going around that Worthington must’ve sold his soul to the devil to have gone from being virtually a nobody to being in every big franchise there was. Looking back on those films now, only “Avatar” tuned out to be good, so its not quite as impressive as it was before those films were coming out.

Synopsis via Comingsoon:
“The film follows an elite DEA task force that deals with the world's deadliest drug cartels. Specializing in complex mobile operations, the team executes a tactical raid on a cartel safe house. What looks to be a typical raid turns out to be an elaborate theft operation, pre-planned by the DEA squad. After hiding millions in stolen cash, the team believes their secret is safe – until someone begins assassinating them one by one.”
What is cool though, is the film would put Worthington opposite Arnold Schwarzenegger. I remember thinking a couple of years ago that Worthington could be the next Schwarzenegger, maybe not in stature, but I thought that Worthington could become the first real action icon since the 80’s and 90’s when they were all in high demand. Now, I know he just did “Wrath of the Titans” but it still feels like Worthington has disappeared a bit, although that’s probably due to him being in so many films a couple years back. We’ll have to wait and see if “Breacher” and the next two Avatar films give Worthington another boost.

Our next bit of news has three actors joining the cast of “Saving Mr. Banks”, the film about the life of P.L. Travers, the author of “Mary Poppins”. Paul Giamatti will be playing Travers’ chauffeur. Ruth Wilson will play Travers’ mother during flashback scenes. Jason Schwartzman will play Disney songwriter Richard Sherman.

Okay, its safe to assume that news isn’t whipping anyone into a frenzy but with the actors listed there, I think it does say a lot for the quality that the film will be trying to achieve. I love Giamatti in everything he does, so even in a small role, his presence can only help the film. I won’t even begin to act like I know how close Travers was to her chauffeur, but the fact that Giamatti has signed on for the role makes me think that he was more than just a standard employee.

The three actors join a cast that already includes Tom Hanks, Emma Thompson, Colin Farrell and Bradley Whitford.

Well that takes care of all the big news this week. Like I said, it was a pretty modest week. So now we’ll shoot through some smaller news.

-Jon Favreau has joined the cast of “The Wolf of Wall Street”. He'll play a securities lawyer in the film chronicling the rise and fall of John Belfort. Favreau joins an already loaded cast featuring Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill, Jean Dujardin, Kyle Chandler, and John Bernthal.

-Alex Pettyfer is in talks for a role in the crime drama “Cali”. He would star opposite Kristen Stewart. The film follows a girl who fakes her own death in a snuff film and runs away, only to return years later to save her sisters. That’s an odd description at best, but that’s pretty much all we’ve got at this point.

-A couple of days after we learned that Sam Worthington would be starring in “Breacher”, we also got word that Terrence Howard, and Dawn Olivieri had begun talks for roles in the film as well. No word yet on what roles they would be playing. Source: ComingSoon

-We recently found out that Charlie Sheen would be playing the president in Robert Rodriguez’s upcoming film “Machete Kills”, and I thought that would be the strangest news. I was wrong, as we learned this week that Lady Gaga would have a role in the film as well, playing a character known as La ChameleĆ³n. We don’t know much about what this role has her doing, but we did get this quote from Rodriquez’s Twitter feed:
"I just finished working with @LadyGaga on @MacheteKills, she kicked SO MUCH ASS! Holy Smokes. Blown away!"
-Joe Taslim has joined the cast of Fast and Furious 6. Taslim recently was one of the stars of “The Raid: Redemption”, which in my opinion was one of the best action movies I’ve seen in years; in terms of physical combat I’ve never seen a better film. This is just more good news for a franchise that continues to get better and better. Source: Variety

-Finishing out the week, Rachel Nichols is in talks to join the cast of “The Ten O’clock People”. The film is based off of a Stephen King short story. Source: The Hollywood Reporter

Well that wraps up this weeks edition of Casting Calls, short and sweet. Be sure to check back every Monday for all the latest casting news and notes! Any of this news spark your attention? Do you think any of these seem like bad choices?