In what’s shaping up to be one of the year’s hottest projects, The Counselor has just attracted some high-caliber acting talent to go along with the Oscar-nominated director, Ridley Scott (Gladiator) and the Pulitzer-Prize winning author, Cormac McCarthy (No Country for Old Men). The project, of course, already features Michael Fassbender (Shame) in the starring role as a respectable lawyer who begins to dabble in the trade of illegal drugs while trying to avoid succumbing to its pitfalls. Previously mentioned for the villainous role in McCarthy’s first ever spec script, were Jeremy Renner (The Hurt Locker), Brad Pitt (Fight Club) and Bradley Cooper (The Hangover). Renner is now in early negotiations along with Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men) for a part that seems less villainous and more enabling, as a criminal who introduces Fassbender’s character to the drug trade. Also in the mix for The Counselor is Natalie Portman (Black Swan), negotiating for a part opposite Fassbender as his fiancee. Hit the jump for much more on The Counselor.
TwitchFilm broke the news that Renner, Portman and Bardem were in talks to star in Scott’s The Counselor. The confusion here is whether or not Renner and Bardem are both negotiating for the same role or if each actor has his own particular character in mind. According to The Playlist, there is a second male role: that of the drug-runner, Westray, who could fit either Renner or Bardem. If the principal criminal or Westray are anything near as bold as McCarthy’s character, Anton Chigurh in No Country for Old Men, I’d love to see Bardem’s take on him. Then again, it might be refreshing to see how Renner handles a more villainous character arc. The only actor that seems to be a sure bet from this list could be Portman, who has a sizable gap in her schedule with her two Terrence Malick films Lawless and Knight of Cups still in pre-production.