The first images from director Michaël R. Roskam’s (Bullhead) crime drama The Drop (formerly titled Animal Rescue) have landed online, offering us a first look at what will sadly be James Gandolfini’s final film. Tom Hardy leads the pic as a former criminal and current bartender working at a place that serves as a money “drop” for local gangsters. Gandolfini plays his cousin, and the story kicks into gear when Hardy’s character rescues a pit bull puppy, only to become the target of the dog’s abusive and mentally unstable former owner. Mystic River and Shutter Island author Dennis Lehane penned the screenplay, and the impressive cast also includes Noomi Rapace and Matthias Schoenaerts.
Hit the jump to check out the debut images. The Drop opens in theaters on September 19th.
A few hours after the last batch, we have a couple more release dates to report:
- The Good Lie - Reese Witherspoon is assigned to help four young Sudanese refugees relocating to the United States in the Warner Bros. drama, now set for release on September 10. Philippe Falardeau (Monsieur Lazhar) directs.
- The Drop - Fox Searchlight scheduled the crime drama formerly known as Animal Rescue for September 19. Tom Hardy, Noomi Rapace, and James Gandolfini star in the Dennis Lehane-penned story set amid “a criminal conspiracy playing out in [Hardy's] mob-controlled bar,” directed by Michaël R. Roskam (Bullhead).
New dates via Box Office Mojo and Fox Searchlight Twitter.
We’ve got a couple of casting stories to share this afternoon. Briefly:
- James Gandolfini is in talks to join Tom Hardy in the crime drama Animal Rescue.
- Girls standout Adam Driver is in negotiations to join Tina Fey and Jason Bateman in the comedy/drama This Is Where I Leave You.
- Law & Order star S. Epatha Merkerson is looking to play Marvin Gaye’s mother in the biopic Sexual Healing.
Hit the jump for more details.
Check out the latest casting news below:
- Joel Kinnaman (The Killing) is in final talks to join Liam Neeson (Taken) in Run All Night, the Warner Bros.’ crime-thriller directed by Jaume Collet-Serra (Unknown).
- James Frecheville (Animal Kingdom) will join Tom Hardy (The Dark Knight Rises) and Noomi Rapace (Prometheus) for Michaël R. Roskam’s Animal Rescue, adapted from the Denis Lehane novel.
Hit the jump for more on both casting announcements.
Some recent casting news to share, as follows:
- Michael Gambon (Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince) and Alfred Molina (Spider-Man 2) will star as a married couple in Love Is Strange, the new film from director Ira Sachs (Keep the Lights On).
- Noomi Rapace (Prometheus) is confirmed to star alongside Tom Hardy in Animal Rescue, an adaptation of a Dennis Lehane short story to be directed by Michael Roskam (Bullhead).
Hit the jump for more on each casting announcement.
It looks like Tom Hardy is getting some company in the Dennis Lehane adaptation Animal Rescue. We previously reported that Hardy was being eyed to star in the pic as a lonely bartender who rescues a puppy from a garbage can and “becomes the target of the dog’s abusive and mentally unstable former owner, while simultaneously getting caught in the middle of a criminal conspiracy playing out in his mob-controlled bar.” Now Deadline reports that Hardy is in final talks to topline the project, while Noomi Rapace is being offered the female lead.
Bullhead’s Michael R. Roskam recently stepped in to replace Neil Burger as the film’s director, and Fox Searchlight is eyeing a March start date in New York for production. Lehane is the author of the previously adapted novels Gone Baby Gone, Mystic River, and Shutter Island, and he penned the script for Animal Rescue based on his own short story. The film’s action has been moved from Boston to New York.
When last we reported on the Fox Searchlight adaptation of Dennis Lehane’s short story, Animal Rescue, it was to tell you that Neil Burger (Limitless) was in line to direct. With Burger stepping aside to helm Divergent, writer/director Michael Roskam (Bullhead) is now seated in the director’s chair. Lehane adapted his own story and penned the script for Animal Rescue, a “crime drama [that] follows a lonely Boston bartender who rescues a puppy from a garbage can and becomes the target of the dog’s abusive and mentally unstable former owner, while simultaneously getting caught in the middle of a criminal conspiracy playing out in his mob-controlled bar.” Noted animal-lover Tom Hardy (The Dark Knight Rises) is being eyed for the protagonist. Hit the jump for more.
When last we discussed author and screenwriter Dennis Lehane, he was working on adapting his short story, Animal Rescue, for Fox 2000. Now, Fox Searchlight has tapped director Neil Burger (Limitless) to helm the adaptation. The picture was previously described as revolving around a killing as a result of a lost and contested pit bull, with new details adding in a man trying to leave a life of crime and a heist gone wrong. Hit the jump for more on the project, including why the combination of Burger, Lehane and Searchlight might just be a winning one.
With Martin Scorsese’s adaption of his novel Shutter Island being released on DVD and Blu-ray next week, I had the chance to interview author Dennis Lehane by phone yesterday. Lehane is the best-selling author of 10 novels, including Gone, Baby, Gone and Mystic River. He was also a staff writer on David Simon’s The Wire from seasons 3 to 5 and is currently working on adapting his short story Animal Rescue for Fox 2000.
Since Lehane’s direct involvement in bringing Shutter Island to the big screen was fairly limited, we spent a lot of time talking about other subjects, including:
- How THR erroneously reported last week that he was writing a script with Paul Tamasy (Air Bud)
- Why he doesn’t ever want to adapt his own novels for the screen
- His golden rule for dealing with Hollywood
- Which novel made him decide to become a writer
- Why he prefers TV to movies and what his favorite shows are
- Why we’ll never see the movie he wrote and directed in the 90s
All this and more after the jump!
Dennis Lehane has previously provided the source material for the critically acclaimed Mystic River and Gone Baby Gone as well as the upcoming Shutter Island and The Given Day. Now Variety reports that he’s finally going to adapt one of his own stories because other writers shouldn’t have all the fun. Lehane will adapt his short story Animal Rescue for Fox 2000 through Peter Chernin’s production company, Chernin Entertainment. The story, via Variety, “revolves around a killing that results from a lost and contested pit bull. The story appeared in the Akashic Books anthology Boston Noir, which Lehane also edited.”
Lehane has been approached in the past to adapt his own work, but this is the first time he’s done it and it will also be his first feature film. His only previous work for the screen were for three episodes of The Wire, so I don’t think there’s much to worry about as far as his screenwriting talent is concerned.