By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist July 8, 2011 at 8:58AM
If you've been reading us for a while, you'll know that one project we've been closely following is Sacha Gervasi's gestating biopic-ish "My Dinner With Hervé." The "Anvil! The Story of Anvil" director has been trying to get the project off the ground for a while now and it's easy to see why -- it's a fascinating tale. The film revolves around the last days of Hervé Villechaize, aka Tattoo—the famous dwarf on TV’s “Fantasy Island.” Written by and based on Gervasi’s true-life experiences, ‘Herve’ is both personal and semi-autobiographical — Gervasi was actually the last journalist to interview Villechaize before he committed suicide in 1993. In fact, after essentially telling Gervasi his life story for a magazine feature profile piece and dredging up a lot of his painful past and upbringing, Villechaize killed himself just a few days later.
It's great material for a film and naturally some big talent has been eyeing it for some time now. Earlier this spring we reported that James McAvoy was one of a handful of actors reading for the part. Ryan Gosling had also told us during press rounds for “Blue Valentine” last year that he had been in discussions for the film, but had since moved on as well. That said, the pieces have been coming together and it looks like a leading man has been found.
Dinklage has long been attached in the title role, but the Cooper is a great bit of casting. Not only does he bear a good (and handsomer) resemblance to Gervasi, but the filmmakers have nabbed the actor in the midst of a rise. He's already been earning plaudits for his dual role turn in "The Devil's Double" he's got a great trio of upcoming films in "Captain America: The First Avenger," "My Week With Marilyn" and "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter." Cooper was also up for the lead role in "The Bourne Legacy," and is quickly becoming of that on-the-rise circle of breaking actors that are being considered for A-list parts. Consider this just casting just another piece of his upward trajectory.
Writer Steven Zaillian and Mandate Pictures are producing through their co-venture Film Rites with Garrett Basch and hopefully this will start rolling in front of cameras this year. Film Rites and spokespersons for Cooper were not available to confirm by press time, but it certainly appears that the cat is out of the bag.