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Casting Tidbits: Ray Wise, Jackie Earle Haley and Paul Giamatti

by
November 30, 2010

Wise / Haley / Giamatti

With as much dignity as he could muster, the Old Man gathered up the sad remains of his shattered Casting Tidbits. Later that night, alone in the backyard, he buried it next to the garage. Now I could never be sure, but I thought that I heard the sound of "Taps" being played, gently. IGN has heard straight form the horse's mouth that Ray Wise ("Reaper", "24") landed a role in Bryan Singer's X-Men: First Class. In the silver age, 1960's set comic book adaptation Wise will be playing the Secretary of State of the United States. The actor will be shooting for a couple weeks and mentioned he may be involved with some big special effects sequences.

Second, THR reports Jackie Earle Haley (Watchmen), Kristen Bell (Forgetting Sarah Marshall), Chloe Moretz (Kick-Ass) and Bailee Madison (Just Go with It) will star in the indie black comedy Dance of the Mirlitons. Evan Greenberg is writing and directing the film which follows an ambitious, slightly overweight ballerina (Madison) with an overbearing mother (Bell) who will stop at nothing to become a star. The girl enters a catty clique-type environment when she has to prove her worth in class and face-off against the star ballerina (Moretz) who becomes her school nemesis. Meanwhile, Haley will likely be bringing laughs as a subtly sadistic Russian ballet teacher of the highest order. Sounds somewhat interesting.

Next, The Playlist reports Paul Giamatti has snagged an unknown role in David Cronenberg's adaptation of  Don DeLillo's book Cosmopolis. The actor is only in active discussions at the moment, but it seems likely that he will have a part in the story following 24 hours in the life of a newly married billionaire (Colin Farrell) as he cheats on his wife (Marion Cotillard), is pursued by a stalker, gets attacked by a protester and gradually loses his entire fortune over the course of a single day. With Farrell set to start shooting the Total Recall remake in March, it doesn't look like Cosmopolis will get started before late 2011.

Also, a press release announced Dougray Scott (Mission Impossible 2) has joined United, the true story of Manchester United’s legendary ‘Busby Babes’, the youngest side ever to win the Football (soccer for us) League, the 1958 Munich Air Crash that claimed eight of the their number and the extraordinary spirit of a city that rebuilt the team in the wake of the disaster. Scott is playing Matt Busby alongside previously cast David Tennant as coach Jimmy Murphy.

Finally, Variety reports Angela Bassett (Akeelah and the Bee) has joined McG's action comedy This Means War. In the story Chris Pine and Tom Hardy play two retired spies who battle with one another after they fall in love with the same woman (Reese Witherspoon). Bassett will play both of the spies' boss who has dedicated her entire life to the spy business and has no life outside the CIA. This is yet another surprising role for Bassett who also landed a small role in the comic book adaptation of Green Lantern.

Well, that's all for this edition of Casting Tidbits. Be sure to stay tuned for more casting updates on the way.

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