James Franco: Villain?
James Franco will play the villainous meth lord "Gator" in Homefront, written by Sylvester Stallone and starring Jason Statham as an ex-DEA agent turned family man. And no, this is not a comedy. Directed by Gary Fleder (Kiss the Girls), this thriller would just sound like another tired action flick, were it not for Franco playing the big baddie. Homefront, you have my attention.
TV Casting News
"McSteamy" Bids Farewell to Grey's
It looks like Grey's Anatomy is losing yet another cast member after the Season 8 finale left many players clinging to life following a plane crash. Eric Dane, a.k.a. Dr. Mark Sloan, a.k.a. "McSteamy," has announced that he will leave the ABC drama after a handful of episodes from the show's ninth season, kicking off Sept. 27. Hey, if it doesn't work out for you on the other side Mr. Dane, I'm sure you can always come back to Grace Mercy Hospital by way of some ludicrous plot twist.
Franka Potente Joins Horror Story
Okay, okay, I'll report one more bit of casting news for the second season of FX's American Horror Story, returning in October. German actress Franka Potente (The Bourne Identity, Run Lola Run) is joining the massive cast of big names as yet another patient with a mysterious past at the show's new locale, a creepy mental institution in the 1960's run by a tyrannical nun (Jessica Lange).
The Office Gains a New Regular
Despite cries from every corner for the long-lasting comedy to throw in the towel, The Office is showing no signs of quitting just yet. The NBC series has cast Jake Lacy of ABC's Better with You (and no, we didn't watch it either) as a new regular in the offices of Dunder Mifflin. Without B.J. Novak, Mindy Kaling and possibly even Rainn Wilson, it may be an uphill battle for any new Office faces to make an impression.
Locklear Gets Hot in Cleveland
Heather Locklear will recur for several episodes of the TV Land sitcom Hot in Cleveland when the hit show returns in the fall, adding even more small-screen star power to the cast. She will play a beauty pageant winner who hires Melanie (Valerie Bertinelli) to work for her, and I'm guessing she will fill the "boss from hell" role. This is good news -- as long as Betty White eventually puts her in her place.
Movie Casting News
Leguizamo Hops Aboard Two Films
John Leguizamo strikes me as an incredibly underrated actor who never quite landed just the right project, so it's great to hear that he will appear in two promising upcoming projects. He'll play a drug dealer in Ridley Scott's The Counselor, starring Michael Fassbender as a lawyer dabbling in the drug trade; and a bodyguard for arch nemesis Red Mist (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) in the superhero sequel Kick-Ass 2. These will likely be relatively small roles, but hey, at least it's not The Happening.
Emma Stone Teams with Cameron Crowe
In what sounds like a match made in cinema heaven, Emma Stone is in talks to land a leading role in Cameron Crowe's romantic dramedy Deep Tiki. What's the film about, you ask? Something to do with a weapons consultant sent to Hawaii who reflects on his life (or maybe her life) while watching over the launch of a spy satellite and grappling with Hawaiian gods. Okay, so the plot is a little up in the air, and we're not sure who exactly Stone will be playing -- but come on, it's Emma Stone and Cameron Crowe, what's not to love?
Machete Kills Casts Lady Gaga
Can something be out of left field and entirely expected at the same time? Robert Rodriguez seems to have put together the strangest cast imaginable for his upcoming sequel Machete Kills, including Charlie Sheen as the U.S. president and Mel Gibson as a villainous weapons dealer. So really, it's no surprise that he has added Lady Gaga to the film as "La Chameleón," a wolfskin-wearing femme fatale. I suppose this is supposed to make us say "ooh" and "ahh," but I'm left with a solid "meh."
Schwartzman and Giamatti Join Mary Poppins Drama
Disney is quickly putting together Saving Mr. Banks, a film based on the true story surrounding the production of Mary Poppins, starring Tom Hanks as Walt Disney (yes!) and Emma Thompson as author P.L. Travers. Now two dynamite actors have joined this already fantastic one-two punch cast: Jason Schwartzman and Paul Giamatti, playing film composer Richard Morton Sherman and Travers's chauffeur, respectively. I think I speak for everyone when I say that this film can't be released soon enough.