Aaron Johnson Offered Lead in Oliver Stone’s SAVAGES; Johnson and Jude Law in Talks for Joe Wright’s ANNA KARENINA

     March 17, 2011


Quickly becoming one of the most sought-after young actors at the moment, Aaron Johnson (Kick-Ass) has been offered the lead role in two high-profile projects. First up, Deadline reports that Johnson is mulling over one of the two lead roles in director Oliver Stone’s adaptation of the Don Winslow novel Savages. The flick tells the story of two pot-growers whose shared girlfriend gets kidnapped by a Mexican drug cartel. Jennifer Lawrence was in talks to take on the role of the girlfriend, but her attachment to The Hunger Games throws her involvement into jeopardy given that both flicks will be shooting this summer.

Variety reports that Johnson and Jude Law are in talks to star in director Joe Wright’s (Atonement) adaptation of Leo Tolstoy’s classic tragic love story Anna Karenina. Tom Stoppard (Shakespeare in Love) wrote the screenplay and Keira Knightley is set to star. Anna Karenina will shoot this fall, so Johnson could feasibly do both films. Hit the jump for a synopsis of both novels.

savages-book-coverHere’s a synopsis for Savages [from Amazon]:

The future is looking good for Laguna Beach, Calif., marijuana growers Ben and Chon, until they receive an ominous e-mail from the Baja Cartel. Attached is a photograph showing the decapitated bodies of other independent drug dealers. The message is clear: sell your product through us or else. Ben and Chon try to resist, but matters escalate after cartel thugs abduct Ophelia, the guys’ beautiful young playmate and accomplice, and hold her for a cool million ransom. Meanwhile, Elena “La Reina” Sanchez Lauter, the leader of the Baja Cartel, must deal with rival drug gangs and potential overthrow from within. Ben and Chon propose a trade that Elena can’t refuse, setting the stage for the violent and utterly satisfying ending. Winslow’s encyclopedic knowledge of the border drug trade lends authenticity.


Here’s a synopsis for Anna Karenina [from Amazon]:

Married to a powerful government minister, Anna Karenina is a beautiful woman who falls deeply in love with a wealthy army officer, the elegant Count Vronsky. Desperate to find truth and meaning in her life, she rashly defies the conventions of Russian society and leaves her husband and son to live with her lover. Condemned and ostracized by her peers and prone to fits of jealousy that alienate Vronsky, Anna finds herself unable to escape an increasingly hopeless situation. Set against this tragic affair is the story of Konstantin Levin, a melancholy landowner whom Tolstoy based largely on himself. While Anna looks for happiness through love, Levin embarks on his own search for spiritual fulfillment through marriage, family, and hard work. Surrounding these two central plot threads are dozens of characters whom Tolstoy seamlessly weaves together, creating a breathtaking tapestry of nineteenth-century Russian society.

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