We feel fairly confident in saying that Michael Winterbottom, or at least his casting director, is a big comedy fan. His lighter work, like "24 Hour Party People," "A Cock And Bull Story" and "The Trip" didn't just help to launch the big-screen careers of Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon, but also provided early cinematic exposure for British comedy favorites like Dave Gorman, Peter Kay, Simon Pegg, Dylan Moran, David Walliams, Ashley Jensen and Stephen Fry.
And as he's re-uniting with Coogan again on "The King of Soho," a biopic of legendary London porn baron turned property millionaire Paul Raymond, the trend looks to continue. Filming is already underway with Anna Friel, Imogen Poots and Tamsin Egerton as Raymond's wife, daughter and mistress respectively, but a few more comic names have announced via Twitter as the latest cast members.
First up is Chris Addison, the stand-up turned actor who's best known for starring in Armando Iannucci's brilliant TV comedy "The Thick Of It," and its cinematic spin-off "In The Loop." Addison announced on his Twitter account this morning that he's bagged a role in "The King of Soho," as "Paul Raymond's porn editor." Also coming along is Addison's co-star on the hugely popular TV panel show "Mock The Week," Dara O'Briain. The Irish stand-up tweeted last week that he "Just finished filming a cameo on Michael Winterbottom's new film 'King of Soho' with Steve Coogan. Played a comedian. #stillcountsasacting."
Finally, fast-rising actress/writer Sarah Solemani also took to Twitter to announce that she's appearing in the film, tweeting last week about her involvement. Solemani's become familiar in the last couple of years thanks to her starring role in the excellent TV comedy from production house Big Talk ("Hot Fuzz," "Attack The Block") "Him & Her," and is currently winning acclaim for her stage performance at the Almeida Theatre in "House of Bernarda Alba," opposite Oscar nominee Shohreh Aghdashloo.
There's no indication of how substantial Addison and Solemani's roles are, but they're both hot stuff at present, so they could well turn out to be fairly major. At the same time, Winterbottom and Coogan's collaborations tend to be so stuffed with talent that they could turn out to be little more than cameos. With filming on "The King of Soho" underway, we should find out in 2013.