By Drew Taylor | The Playlist August 27, 2012 at 6:48PM
Update (09/06): Coming Soon report that Fassbender has officially signed on to the project.
"Jane Got a Gun," the small-scale western starring Natalie Portman that recently attached "We Need to Talk About Kevin" filmmaker Lynne Ramsay as a director, could be getting some added firepower in the form of a white hot leading man, sex addict and occasional robot (in the movies, at least) Michael Fassbender. Vulture reports that the actor is in early talks for the film, which could start lensing early next year.
A member of the coveted Hollywood Black List, the script by Brian Duffield concerns a woman (Portman) who reaches out to a hard-ass ex-lover (the role Fassbender would play) after her outlaw husband is left for dead. The bulk of the movie would have Portman and Fassbender defending her home against her husband's marauding ex-partners as they come back to finish what they started. Even with a tiny budget (under $20 million) and Ramsay's occasionally obtusely arty directorial style, this sounds like it could be ridiculously cool.
As the Vulture report notes, the film is being financed by Portman's handsomecharlie films production shingle, which in turn is backed by 1821, an outfit that also backed the Richard Kelly/Cameron Diaz vehicle "The Box," which despite having the infamous distinction of the only movie in history to receive an F from Cinemascore, is a pretty interesting and argumentatively weird little thriller. We expect similar strangeness from "Jane Got a Gun," especially after Ramsay's triumphant return to the big screen with last year's profound (and profoundly disturbing) "We Need to Talk About Kevin." After a nearly ten year absence between 'Kevin' and her previous film "Morvern Callar," the idea that we'll be getting Ramsay films at regular intervals tickles us to no end.
While Fassbender hasn't signed on the dotted line, Vulture is reporting that he is incredibly close. The actor is currently filming Cormac McCarthy's "The Counselor" for his "Prometheus" director Ridley Scott, which recently suspended production for a week while Ridley dealt with the tragic suicide of his brother, Tony Scott. Ramsay had previously said that she wanted to tackle a sci-fi retelling of "Moby Dick" next, but that will undoubtedly follow "Jane Got A Gun." Hey, if Portman could make a hit out of "Black Swan," maybe she could do it for a gritty low budget western, too, which would certainly enable Ramsay's more ambitious and complex "Moby Dick" project.