A few pieces of casting to report:
- Martin Freeman is in talks to join Tina Fey and Margot Robbie in The Taliban Shuffle, a black comedy set in Kabul. Glenn Ficarra and John Requa (Crazy Stupid Love) will direct the adaptation of Kim Barker’s memoir.
- Bryce Dallas Howard is in talks to join the cast of Pete’s Dragon. Oakes Fegley, Oona Lawrence, and Robert Redford also star in the picture directed by David Lowery (Ain’t Them Bodies Saints).
- Matt Smith will star opposite Natalie Dormer in pandemic thriller Patient Zero, directed by Stefan Ruzowitzky (Deadfall).
More on each project after the jump.
According to THR, Freeman will play a Scottish photojournalist, a love interest for Fey’s protagonist. Here’s the synopsis for Barker’s book:
When Kim Barker first arrived in Kabul as a journalist in 2002, she barely owned a passport, spoke only English and had little idea how to do the “Taliban Shuffle” between Afghanistan and Pakistan. No matter—her stories about Islamic militants and shaky reconstruction were soon overshadowed by the bigger news in Iraq. But as she delved deeper into Pakistan and Afghanistan, her love for the hapless countries grew, along with her fear for their future stability. In this darkly comic and unsparing memoir, Barker uses her wry, incisive voice to expose the absurdities and tragedies of the “forgotten war,” finding humor and humanity amid the rubble and heartbreak. [Amazon]
Pete’s Dragon centers on a young orphan (Lawrence) who flees his abusive parents and befriends a dragon that often turns invisible. Per THR, Howard will play a forest ranger who is understandably skeptical about Pete’s stories about a dragon.
Deadline provides the synopsis for Patient Zero:
“In Patient Zero, an unprecedented global pandemic of a super strain of rabies has resulted in the evolution of a new species driven by violence. An inexplicably immune human survivor with the ability to communicate with this new species must spearhead a hunt for Patient Zero in order to find a cure to save his infected wife and humanity.”