Two more fantastic actors may be joining the revenge drama Out of the Furnace. I was already high on the project given that it serves as the follow-up to writer-director Scott Cooper’s swell drama Crazy Heart, then Christian Bale signed on to play the lead. Bale plays a man who is released after serving four years in prison only to find that his younger brother has been brutally murdered. He sets out to avenge the death and track down the killer. Casey Affleck is onboard as Bale’s brother, Zoe Saldana is set as Bale’s ex-wife, and we previously heard that Viggo Mortensen was circling the villain role.
Buried in a different story (thanks to The Playlist for the find), Deadline now notes that Billy Bob Thornton is eyeing the villain role instead of Mortensen, and Forest Whitaker is circling the role of a sleazy bookie. Both Mortensen and Thornton are terrific, but the prospect of Thornton tackling a gritty villain opposite Bale is incredibly enticing. No deals have been made with Thornton or Whitaker, but Cooper is assembling an incredible cast for what’s shaping up to be one hell of a movie. Production begins this spring.