By Ken Guidry | The Playlist October 22, 2013 at 10:01AM
If there’s anything one could take away from Jason Statham’s career over the past few years, it’s that he likes to kick a lot of ass. He’s one of the few reliable action stars in the business, always fun to watch even if his movies aren’t always worth writing home about. Now he might be getting a chance to flex his comic muscles, teaming up with Melissa McCarthy, Rose Byrne, and director Paul Feig in “Susan Cooper.” Statham is currently in talks to star in the “Casino Royale”-inspired comedy with McCarthy playing an unlikely secret agent and Statham a spy, while other details regarding the film are currently being kept under wraps. Statham, of course, made his film debut in Guy Ritchie’s caper comedies “Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels” and “Snatch,” so he’s no stranger to the genre. Meanwhile Feig and McCarthy’s most recent comedy “The Heat” was a clear notch below from their previous hit comedy “Bridesmaids,” so perhaps a teaming with Statham could be a much-needed change-up for all involved. [Deadline]
The prospect of another “Night at the Museum” movie may not sound exciting to some people, but it should not come as a surprise. The first two films, starring Ben Stiller, were highly profitable and there’s nothing to indicate that a third one couldn’t make some serious cash as well. For the third installment, Stiller is coming back as is director Shawn Levy, and now Robin Williams looks to be returning too. Williams, currently starring in the CBS hit sitcom “The Crazy Ones,” will reprise his role as Theodore Roosevelt, and the movie is to be set in London. With the first two films known for having star-studded ensemble casts, we are certain to hear more casting news for this one as it starts coming together. “Night at the Museum 3” will hit theaters on Christmas 2014. [THR]
Chris Evans now has a passenger for his indie directorial debut, "1:30 Train." Alice Eve is joining the Ron Bass ("Snow Falling On Cedars," "Rain Man") penned, "Before Sunrise"-esque movie, centering on a "down on his luck saxophone player" (Evans, LOL) and a "woman in need" (Eve) who meet in Manhattan and spend a romantic evening together. McG's Wonderland Sound And Vision is producing, and this will shoot before Evans has to get back into his superhero gear for "The Avengers" sequel. [The Wrap]
Here's the biggest WTF announcement of the week: Seann William Scott, Jackie Chan and Fan Bingbing will star in the action comedy "Skiptrace." Really. Co-written by Jay Longino ("Bachelor Party 2: The Last Temptation") along with Brian Gatewood and Alessandro Tanaka ("The Sitter"), and David Posamentier and Geoff Moore ("Better Living Through Chemistry"), the story will follow Bennie Black (Chan), a Hong Kong detective who has been tracking notorious crime boss Victor Wong for over a decade. When Bennie’s young niece Bai (Bingbing) gets into trouble with Wong’s crime syndicate, Bennie must track down the only man who can help him: fast-talking American gambler Connor Watts (Scott). Bennie races against the clock to bring Connor back to Hong Kong and the unlikely pair embark on an entertaining and perilous adventure from the snowy mountains of Mongolia to the windswept dunes of the Gobi desert. So, "Midnight Run" meets "Rush Hour"? Guess we'll out when production begins in January. Sam Fell ("ParaNorman") directs.
Lastly, after entertaining audiences the past few years in his role in HBO’s “True Blood,” actor Nelsan Ellis will be seen on the big screen next year alongside Chadwick Boseman in the James Brown biopic “Get On Up.” With Boseman playing the Godfather of Soul, Ellis has landed the role of James Brown’s longtime friend and collaborator, Bobby Byrd. Production is set to begin in Mississippi this November with Tate Taylor in the director’s chair. The movie will also star Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer. Spencer, Davis, and Nelsan Ellis all appeared together in Tate Taylor’s previous film, “The Help.” [Deadline]