- Charlize Theron won't be joining Leonardo DiCaprio, Armie Hammer and new cast member Ed Westwick in Clint Eastwood's J. Edgar. Naomi Watts and Amy Adams are being eyed by Eastwood to fill the role of Helen Gandy (Hoover's personal secretary). Who can blame Theron for turning down a secretary when she's set to play the Evil Queen in Unviersal's Snow White and the Huntsman. Twentieth Century Fox reportedly is rewriting their Alien franchise prequel for Theron, but director Ridley Scott seems to be favoring Dragon Tattoo's Noomi Rapace. Theron is the only female movie star beyond Angelina Jolie who can carry an action movie--while less-known Scandinavian import Rapace is a gamble. She and Rapace would certainly bring different things to the character of Elizabeth Shaw.
- It's a big happy family reunion. The Hobbit reunites The Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson with location New Zealand and at least four stars: (Elijah Wood as Frodo, Ian McKellan as Gandalf, Cate Blanchett as Galadriel and Andy Serkis as Gollum). An offer is out for Orlando Bloom to return as Legolas. Martin Freeman (Love Actually) will star as the young Bilbo Baggins. Other new names are rumored to be attached, including Saoirse Ronan as Itaril. Shooting starts February 14.
In indie casting news, The Playroom, a collaboration between siblings Gretchen (writer), Julia (director) and Stephen (producer) Dyer, has cast John Hawkes and Molly Parker. The pair, who've worked together on HBO's Deadwood, will play the parents of four in the 1975 Dallas suburbs. Olivia Harris is their daughter, who raises the younger children in a attic make-believe world to escape their parent's shameful existence below. The Dyers' first film, comedy Late Bloomers, premiered at Sundance in 1996 in competition.