The Low Dweller

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Confirming some long-rumored casting picks, and even throwing in a surprise or two, Relativity Media has just sent around a press release detailing confirmed casting for Scott Cooper‘s Out of the Furnace. After the critical success of his directorial debut (which was nominated for three Oscars, ultimately winning two, including Jeff Bridges’s long-deserved first Academy Award), Cooper has been attached to a number of projects, but Out of the Furnace will be his first film since 2009. The release confirms that Christian Bale, Casey Affleck, Zoe Saldana, and Sam Shepard are set to star in the gritty drama. Bale has been on board as lead Russell Baze since August, but this is the official confirmation of his role. Affleck and Saldana have been attached to the film since March as Bale’s younger brother and love interest, respectively, but back then, Robert Duvall was mentioned to take Shepard’s role as the Baze brothers’ uncle, Red. Still up in the air? The villain role – once rumored to be played by Viggo Mortensen or Billy Bob Thornton. At this point, they could cast anyone in this role, as the current cast is a fantastic collection of talents.

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We’ve yet to see a follow-up film from Scott Cooper since his much lauded Jeff Bridges as an alcoholic country singer film Crazy Heart made its rounds on the awards circuit, but that appears ready to change. Relativity Media bought a spec script back in 2008 called The Low Dweller. It’s the story of an 80s era Indiana convict who gets out of jail and tries to set about putting together a normal life, but instead gets sucked into a revenge scheme after his brother is murdered. A fairly anonymous Pennsylvania man named Brad Ingelsby wrote the original script, and when it was bought it was Relativity’s intentions that Leonardo DiCaprio would star and Ridley Scott would direct. Those plans have changed considerably, but DiCaprio is still on the project in a producer’s role. Now the film has been re-titled Out of the Furnace, and Cooper has been hired not only to direct the film, but also give the script a rewrite. It was reported back in November that Cooper was also involved in a remake of the Argentinean film Carancho, so it remains to be seen where this film ends up falling on his to-do list. Either way, the news of a movie studio hiring a director to bring to life a spec script that isn’t attached to any sort of pre-existing property or centered on a product or corporate logo should be reason enough to celebrate. Right? Source: Deadline Birdseye

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