By Oliver Lyttelton | www.oliverlyttelton.com April 19, 2011 at 1:21AM
Speaking of "Fringe," the show's biggest name, former "Dawson's Creek" star Joshua Jackson, looks to be using his summer hiatus from the show productively. The actor's been something of a fixture on screens for almost two decades now, and is currently doing his best-ever work on the J.J. Abrams-produced sci-fi show, but, outside of his early roles in the "Mighty Ducks" franchise, he's never exactly had a ton of success on the big-screen.
Most of his credits are in low-rent genre fare, in stuff like "The Skulls," "Gossip" and "Shutter," but he's just booked a new job alongside some high-profile names in a project far more promising than any of those. Variety reports that Jackson is in talks for the Stephen Frears-helmed gambling drama "Lay the Favorite," in which he would join the already-signed Rebecca Hall and Bruce Willis.
The project is based on the memoirs of Beth Raymer, who started off as a cocktail waitress in Vegas, before becoming one of the world's top professional gamblers. When she fell in love, however, she started to rethink her lifestyle. Hall will play Raymer, with Willis as Dink Heimowitz, her mentor -- there's no word on Jackson's role, but we assume it would be Hall's love interest. It's most likely the role that Justin Timberlake was previously reported as being in the running for -- there's been no confirmation on his presence, or that of Catherine Zeta-Jones, who was linked to the project at the same time.
We're huge fans of Frears, but he's been on something of a bad run of late, with neither "Cheri" or "Tamara Drewe" being particularly engaging (and the latter in fact being kind of awful). But the subject matter sounds like it'll closer to "The Grifters," still Frears' best work, than either of those films, and the script comes from D.V. DeVincentis, who previously worked with the director on the excellent "High Fidelity," as well as co-writing the script for "Grosse Point Blank." Between the behind-the-scenes talent, and Hall in the lead, this is certainly one we're looking forward to -- filming begins shortly for a 2012 release