By Simon Dang | The Playlist May 18, 2012 at 10:50AM
Even though he scripted "American Beauty" for Sam Mendes before his two successful television shows "Six Feet Under" and "True Blood," Alan Ball has only returned to the silver screen for little-seen directorial debut "Towelhead." Last year, though, brought news that Emmy and Oscar winning writer-director (hello EGOT?) was lining up a return with a dark comedy for Paramount.
While Ball has now stepped away from the director's chair for "True Blood" protégé and television vet Daniel Minahan (who came close to landing the job directing "Thor 2,") he's now found his leading lady for film in the form of the versatile Elizabeth Banks. The actress will play a stepped-on office-worker who after years of abuse snaps and resorts to murderous revenge. Lensing will begin early next year in L.A. soon after Banks team with Charlie Kaufman for his highly anticipated film industry musical satire, "Frank Or Francis." [ThompsonOnHollywood]
Robin Williams, Mila Kunis and Peter Dinkage have all joined Phil Alden Robinson's "The Angriest Man In Brooklyn" which already features Melissa Leo and James Earl Jones. The comedy sets off as a stand-in doctor mistakenly tells an obnoxious patient he has 90 minutes to live and must desperately try to find the man again after the news send him on a tour of the city. No word on what actors are in which roles but surely Williams is in line to for the titular role? Script comes courtesy of Daniel Taplitz ("Red Dog"). [ScreenDaily]
Chris Nolan-favorite Cillian Murphy will star opposite Melanie Laurent in a new adaptation of Stefan Zweig's "Letter From An Unknown Woman." While the lead of the original was an author, Christian Carion's latest version will follow a pop star as he receives a life-changing letter from an admirer. Zweig's novel was once adapted before with acclaim by Max Ophuls, with the latest iteration currently being shopped in Cannes by TF1 International along with another project that'll see 'Sherlock Holmes' actress Kelly Reilly starring in Danish helmer Birger Larsen's adaptation of "The Ice Princess." [ScreenDaily]
It's been a while since we've seen Vera Farmiga in a lead role, the actress having featured recently only in "Source Code," "Goats" and "Safe House," but the actress will now star in a Greenland-set psychological thriller that'll see play a woman out for revenge on the man who killed her daughter in a hit-and-run accident. David Newman and Catherine Linstrum make their directorial debut on the project which has production shingles Sigma and Zentropa backing. A fall shoot is being eyed. [ScreenDaily]
Damian Lewis ("Homeland"), Jessica Brown-Findlay ("Downton Abbey"), Peter Capaldi ("In The Loop") and Iwan Rheon will star in multihypenate David Leon's directorial debut, "Driven." Set to lense early next year, the crime thriller is loosely based on Leon's childhood experiences in the late '80's and early '90's living in Newcastle. Leon won Best Narrative Feature at last year’s Tribeca Film Festival with "Man And Boy," starring Eddie Marsan. [ScreenDaily]