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David O. Russell Eyes Crime Drama 'American Bullshit'; Christian Bale Sought To Star

Photo of Kevin Jagernauth By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist March 21, 2012 at 5:22PM

Update: Deadline reports that the project is still in very early stages, nothing is quite official, but Russell is taking a look and Christian Bale is in very early talks to star.
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David O. Russell

Update: Deadline reports that the project is still in very early stages, nothing is quite official, but Russell is taking a look and Christian Bale is in very early talks to star.

Director David O. Russell has spun the project roulette wheel and has added another promising film to his big pile of stuff he might do.

Currently in post-production on "The Silver Linings Playbook," that helmer has now signed on to direct "American Bullshit," a Black List script that early last year, Ben Affleck was considering as a followup to "The Town." Written by Eric Warren Singer ("The International") the film is based on the true story of Abscam, the FBI's 1980 undercover sting operation of Congress to root out corruption, which was the brainchild Melvin Weinberg, one of the most notoriouis conmen inthe world, who was hired by the bureau to run the investigation. The operation targeted thirty-one officials and led to eleven convictions and while it came under scrutiny for its unorthodox methods, all the convictions were upheld on appeal.

As THR cautions, the project is in early stages (and Deadline says the director's rep are denying he's doing it) and Russell's involvement apparently depends on casting. And not only that, dude has a handful of other options as well. In the past while he's lined up a plethora of projects including: a Columbian hostage movie entitled "The Mission" that had Brad Pitt sniffing around a role; a biopic of Rhode Island mayor Buddy Cianci and another biopic on Russ Meyer. And who knows what else may cross his plate in the coming weeks and months. But "American Bullshit" sounds like a juicy story, that would also offer a bit of gear change for the director. But no guarantees yet it will make it in front cameras with Russell at the helm.

This article is related to: American Bullshit, David O. Russell, Christian Bale


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