We have a couple of quick casting stories for you this morning. First up, I’m pleased to report that Kasi Lemmons‘ gospel musical Black Nativity has finally found a lead actor by casting Oscar-winner Forest Whitaker. As we previously reported, both Samuel L. Jackson and Lawrence Fishburne passed on the movie, which follows a young black teen who spends Christmas with his estranged grandparents. Through his grandfather’s Christmas Eve sermon and a stylized, dream-sequence retelling of the classic Nativity story, he learns about the importance of faith and family. According to Blackfilm, “Whitaker is expected to play multiple characters during the Nativity sequence.” Angela Bassett will play the boy’s grandmother, and Jennifer Hudson will play the mother. As a big fan of Lemmons’ last film, Talk to Me, I’m glad that production is set to begin in January 2013.
Hit the jump for casting news on McG‘s action film starring Kevin Costner.
According to Deadline, True Grit star Hailee Steinfeld is set to star opposite Kevin Costner in an untitled action film directed by McG and produced/co-written by Luc Besson. The film (previously titled Three Days to Kill) centers on a dying secret service (Costner) agent who retires in order to reconnect with his family. The Secret Service offers him the chance to use an experimental drug that could save his life in exchange for one last assignment, and the agent finds himself “trying to juggle his family, his mission, and the drug’s hallucinatory side-effects.” Steinfeld will play his estranged daughter.
Steinfeld has been absent from theaters far too long since her amazing turn in True Grit, but she’s set to return to the big screen in a big way next year. In 2013, she’ll be seen in Can a Song Save Your Life, Romeo and Juliet, and Ender’s Game.