When last we reported on the female lead casting of director Tom Hooper’s Les Miserables, we told you that Amanda Seyfried (Mamma Mia!) had been offered the role of Cosette and Taylor Swift (Valentine’s Day) had been asked to play Eponine. While Seyfried has accepted, Deadline is reporting that stage performer Samantha Barks has bested Swift for the role of Eponine. She previously performed the role in 2010’s London production of Les Miserables as well as the 25th anniversary concert last year. Barks will join Russell Crowe, Hugh Jackman, Anne Hathaway, Eddie Redmayne, Aaron Tveit and Seyfried for the December 7th release. Click here to see all of our previous coverage on Les Miserables. Hit the jump for more casting news concerning Piper Perabo (Coyote Ugly) joining the David Hackl (Saw II) thriller, Red Machine.
As we prepare for Liam Neeson to show us a man’s man’s surivival tale with next weekend’s The Grey, casting is underway on a survival film of a different color. James Marsden, Thomas Jane, and Billy Bob Thornton are set to star in the thriller Red Machine. Marsden and Jane play two estranged brothers who reunite on a camping trip with their girlfriends. Once out in the wild, however, “things go horribly awry when they are attacked and relentlessly stalked by a horrifying grizzly bear—the Red Machine.” Considering the logline and cast, I initially figured the film would be more along the lines of a comedic farce, but then I learned that Saw V helmer David Hackl is onboard to direct. Now I think we can safely expect lots and lots of bear carnage.
Variety reports that Thornton will play a legendary bear expert and hunter in the film, with a script by J.R. Reher. The three leads are fine actors, and I’m incredibly intrigued to see what Thornton’s take on a grizzly bear expert looks like. Hackl stressed that he’s interested in examining “the thrill of very real fear,” and cites the realistic nature of the pic. No word on how the “realistic” blood count is expected to compare to the Saw franchise.