By Simon Dang | The Playlist January 28, 2011 at 1:52AM
Things are certainly coming together on John Hillcoat's "The Wettest County In The World" and, frankly, it's all a bit surreal after the shocking and sudden demise of its first iteration. The latest name to now join the Nick Cave-scripted adaptation of Matt Bondurant's novel is newcomer Dane DeHaan who, like the recently linked Mia Wasikowska, broke out with a role on Rodrigo Garcia's exceptional HBO drama "In Treatment" but also has roles in the lesbian werewolf pic "Jack & Diane" and the campy HBO vampire show "True Blood" on the horizon.
DeHaan will be taking on the role of teenage bootlegger Cricket, the partner-in-crime for Jack, the youngest of three leading brothers who'll be played by Shia Labeouf. Tom Hardy, meanwhile, is set to play Forrest, the middle brother with Jessica Chastain portraying his ginger-haired love interest, Maggie. No word just yet on who Australian actor Jason Clarke will be portraying, though all signs seemingly point to the oldest brother, Howard.
'The Wettest County' follows the story of the aforementioned brothers who run a bootlegging gang during Prohibition with their moonshine dynasty in Franklin County, Virginia threatened by the authorities wanting a cut. The adaptation had originally attracted the likes of Michael Shannon, Ryan Gosling, Paul Dano, Amy Adams and Scarlett Johansson but, with that falling through due to financial reasons, trading big names for up and comers like Chastain, Clarke and DeHaan in the lead roles makes sense.
Evidently, Michael Benaroya of Benaroya Pictures and Megan Ellison’s Annapurna Production ("True Grit") are the financiers behind the project's revival with production set to get under way next month. [UpAndComers]