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Naomi Watts Joins ‘J. Edgar’ Hoover Cast

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Naomi Watts has signed on to star in J. Edgar, the Clint Eastwood-directed biopic. Watts will play Helen Gandy, J. Edgar Hoover’s loyal secretary for 54 years. Hoover (played by Leonardo DiCaprio) called her indispensible and she was the ultimate keeper of his secrets and a behind the scenes influence on the workings of the FBI. After Hoover died, Gandy spent weeks destroying his personal file, which contained the incriminating material that he used to manipulate and control the most powerful figures in D.C.  Imagine’s Brian Grazer is producing with Eastwood and his Malpaso partner Rob Lorenz.

Watts takes the role that Charlize Theron was once expected to play, before she moved on to play the Evil Queen in Snow White and the Huntsman and to likely be in the cast of the Ridley Scott-directed Prometheus. Watts had been the frontrunner, but the studio considered other actresses because it looked like her schedule wouldn’t work out. It has.

Aside from DiCaprio and Watts, Ed Westwick is set to play Agent Smith, a clean-cut operative hired by Hoover to write his biography; Josh Lucas plays aviator Charles Lindbergh; Damon Herriman plays Bruno Hauptmann, the German immigrant accused of kidnapping Lindbergh’s 20-month baby in 1932. Called the crime of the century, Hauptmann’s trial was a major case for Hoover;  Ken Howard is playing U.S. attorney General Harlan F. Stone and Armie Hammer is set to play Clyde Tolson, Hoover’s alleged lover. Erica … Read More »

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‘Gossip Girl’s Ed Westwick joins ‘J. Edgar’

Mike Fleming

Gossip Girl star Ed Westwick has landed a major supporting role in J. Edgar, the Clint Eastwood-directed drama about manipulative FBI director J. Edgar Hoover that stars Leonardo DiCaprio. At the same time, Charlize Theron will not be playing the role of Helen Gandy, as was rumored. She’s signing on for Snow White and the Huntsman at Universal and Eastwood is now looking at Naomi Watts and Amy Adams as possibles for the Gandy role. As for Westwick, the British actor will play a clean cut operative with writing skill. Once Hoover discovers he can write, he conscripts Agent Smith to write Hoover’s biography, until Smith gets a little too close to the truth. The film’s produced by Brian Grazer’s Imagine Entertainment and Eastwood’s Malpaso. The Social Network‘s Armie Hammer also signed on to play Hoover’s assistant and secret lover Clyde Tolson.

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