By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist January 5, 2011 at 3:58AM
Could Kathryn Bigelow's international drug trade drama "Triple Frontier" be closer than we initially imagined? The long-gestating project was thought to be earmarked for an early-to-mid 2011 shoot until reports surfaced last month that director Kathryn Bigelow and writer Mark Boal were shopping around a new film, a black-ops thriller that would shoot before "Triple Frontier" which had been pushed to a fall 2011 start, to theoretically accommodate Johnny Depp one of the first names linked to the project. But it seems something in those reports was slightly off.
Speaking to Shock Til You Drop, producer Charles Roven revealed that the plan is still very much to get "Triple Frontier" moving and in front of cameras this spring. "It's a big, big, big project logistically in the sense that, if the production plan happens, it's scheduled to shoot in a number of countries both down in South America and in North America. So yeah. That's a really fantastic project and really exciting. Working with Kathryn and Mark Boal is really great. It's a great, great script. We've been on a number of location scouts and Tom Hanks is starring in the film. We're looking to cast the other roles. We're hoping to be able to start shooting the movie sometime in mid-March or April. That's what our goal is right now. But, like all movies, 'till they're up, they're up. (Laughs) Until they're shooting, they're not shooting," he said.
Of course, this raises a few interesting questions. Firstly, it would seem that reported plans for the black ops thriller to go before "Triple Frontier" were a bit premature. With the project being shopped around and without a script, it seemed strange that Boal would knock something out and Bigelow would film it, particularly after spending the majority of last year scouting locations and meeting with actors for "Triple Frontier."
It would also seem that Johnny Depp is likely off the project. This spring he's set to re-team with Tim Burton for "Dark Shadows" and even if production were pushed to the fall, he recently confirmed his involvement with "The Lone Ranger" which is said to be gearing up for a second-half 2011 shoot. Now it remains to be seen if any one the names previously circling the project -- Sean Penn, Will Smith, Javier Bardem and Christian Bale (probably not since he suits up for "The Dark Knight Rises" in May and shoots "Nanjing Heroes" in China this winter) -- are being locked in for the film. So far only Tom Hanks is officially on board.
At any rate, it appears that "Triple Frontier" may be happening sooner than we thought and if March or April are indeed the projected dates for the film to start lensing, more casting news and other tidbits should trickle out in the weeks to come.