By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist March 22, 2012 at 5:00PM
Update: Relativity Media sent out an press release today. Forest Whitaker has officially joined the cast. No word on Billy Bob Thornton and with production imminent, our guess is his deal never came together.
Though not quite locked to go in front of cameras -- Relativity is apparently looking to partner with someone on production costs -- it looks pretty certain that "Out Of The Furnace" will be "Crazy Heart" director Scott Cooper's next film, and he's already gearing up a solid cast. Christian Bale is lined up for the lead role, with Zoe Saldana also on board, and Casey Affleck looking likely to bag a key supporting role. And now two more thesps are looking to play along.
Buried within another story, Deadline reveals that Billy Bob Thornton and Forest Whitaker are also circling roles in the film. The Black List script was penned by Brad Ingelsby, and follows Slim (Bale), recently released from prison, who intends to marry his girlfriend (Saldana) but instead is drawn into a quest for revenge when his brother is murdered after getting involved in the gambling racket. Affleck will play the brother who meets a grisly end, with Whitaker as a "sleazy bookie" and Thornton as the villain. Not too shabby at all.
And the good news keeps rolling for Ingelsby, as he is nearing a deal to offload his latest script "The Signal" to production company Indian Paintbrush. It's a family adventure tale with sci-fi elements that takes place over a holiday weekend, but other than that, details are being kept under wraps.
As for 'Furnace,' hopefully we'll find out more soon because it sounds like a great piece of genre material with a cast to kill for. Production is aiming to get underway this spring and wrap up before Bale starts work on his Malick two-fer.