Exclusive: Daniel Craig in Negotiations to Star in Jon Favreau’s COWBOYS & ALIENS

     January 13, 2010

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As we reported on Monday, Robert Downey Jr. has dropped out of the adaptation of Scott Mitchell Rosenberg comic book series Cowboys & Aliens.  But now we are hearing through sources that Daniel Craig is in negotiations to replace him in the lead role of Zeke Jackson.  Obviously, this would be very cool since it would be his first collaboration with Jon Favreau, who is directing the film from a script by Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman (Star Trek), and Damon Lindelof (Lost).

Let me stress: “In negotiations” means that Craig has not been cast in the role.  What it means is that they’re trying to work out a deal for him to star, but sometimes things don’t work out.  Maybe the schedule for Bond 23 moves up or he decides to do a different project.

Hit the jump to read a brief synopsis along with what Orci and Kurtzman had to say about the film when we spoke to them back in October.  Cowboys & Aliens is currently set to be released sometime in 2011.

UPDATEVariety has confirmed our scoop.  Of course no mention of Collider.

cowboys_aliens_comic_book_cover_01.jpgFor those not familiar with the premise of Cowboys & Aliens, here’s the logline:

In Silver City, Arizona, Apache Indians and Western settlers must lay their differences aside when an alien spaceship crash lands in their city.

You can click here and read the full comic.  Here’s what Orci and Kurtzman had to say about the project last October:

Now that Cowboys & Aliens script is a go, how is that film developing and how is it to work with Jon Favreau?

ALEX KURTZMAN: It’s the greatest.

ROBERTO ORCI: We just started and we’re getting along really well. We’ve sent ourselves back to school and we’re watching Westerns together and analyzing them. We’re just getting into it.

Have you found any good references?

KURTZMAN: Oh, yeah.

ORCI: We just watched The Searchers last.

KURTZMAN: We had a lot of these Westerns in our head, but Jon is an incredible fountain of Western knowledge.

ORCI: And, Star Trek was originally pitched as a space Western, anyway, so it was a nice lead up to this, for us.

KURTZMAN: I think Jon also comes from a very similar emotional place and, because he’s an actor, he knows what plays and what doesn’t play very quickly. We’re having an unbelievably good time working with him.

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