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‘Slumdog’s Anil Kapoor Now Joining ‘M:I4′

Mike Fleming

UPDATE: Paramount now telling me that Anil Kapoor is negotiating to play a “integral supporting role” that is being kept under wraps, but they say he’s not a villain, despite what my sources say. Guess we’ll see.

EXCLUSIVE: Paramount Pictures is spanning the globe for its Mission: Impossible villains. Slumdog Millionaire’s Anil Kapoor has been cast as a major heavy in the Brad Bird-directed film. He joins Girl with the Dragon Tattoo star Michael Nykvist, previously cast as a villain, and reports have French actress Lea Seydoux in the nemesis lineup. Tom Cruise stars with Jeremy Renner, Paula Patton and Simon Pegg. Kapoor followed up his Slumdog turn with the final season of the Fox series 24. Cruise and JJ Abrams hatched the film’s idea and are producing together. Kapoor is repped by ICM.

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And In Other Film Deals…

Mike Fleming

UPDATE: Universal has bought screen rights to the Richard Aleas crime novel Little Girl Lost and has attached I’m With Cancer helmer Jonathan Levine to direct. Michael Bacall is writing the script. An NYU dropout-turned private eye learns that the high school girlfriend he thought went to medical school instead became a stripper, and was murdered…

The website Latino Review got the drop on the festering question of who would play arch-nemesis Moriarty in Sherlock Holmes 2. It will be Jared Harris, the son of Richard Harris and a Mad Men cast member. Rumors were the studio was looking to star cast for the role, with Daniel Day-Lewis and Colin Firth mentioned. Jude Law reprises, while Noomi Rapace and Stephen Fry are in the cast, the latter playing Holmes’ older brother…

Paul Haggis is reportedly going to write the script for The Equalizer, the CBS drama that’s had Russell Crowe attached…

Lost hunk Josh Holloway is joining M:I4 cast of Tom Cruise, Jeremy Renner, Paula Patton, reprising thesps Simon Pegg and  Ving Rhames, and newcomers Vladimir Mashkov and Michael Nykvist.

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Melissa Sagemiller In For Paula Patton On NBC Drama ‘Law & Order: SVU’

Nellie Andreeva

After Paula Patton just landed the biggest movie role of her career, the female lead in Mission: Impossible 4, she had to pull out of Law & Order: SVU where she was to play Assistant District Attorney Mikka Von. So now Melissa Sagemiller has been tapped to step in and recur as a new ADA on the show, which returns for a 12th season on Sept. 22. I hear the producers of the veteran NBC procedural Read More »

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Paula Patton Joins ‘Mission: Impossible 4′

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Paula Patton has landed that female lead role that Deadline told you she was testing for, alongside actresses Lauren German and Kristen Kreuk. I’m told that Patton will play a young operative who works with Tom Cruise’s Ethan Hunt character. The film will not be called Mission: Impossible 4. Cruise and JJ Abrams, who hatched the project together, always envisioned it as a franchise reboot. The film begins production in the fall with Brad Bird directing Cruise, who’ll co-star with The Hurt Locker‘s Jeremy Renner in what was another hotly contested role. Paramount co-finances the $140 million film with David Ellison’s Skydance banner. It marks the first film for Cruise and Paramount since he left the studio after generating over $3 billion in worldwide grosses for Paramount.

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CASTING: ‘M:I4′, ‘Wanderlust’, ‘The Sitter’

Mike Fleming

Now that Jeremy Renner snagged the big male lead opposite Tom Cruise in the next Mission: Impossible, the focus of Paramount Pictures, director Brad Bird and producers Cruise and JJ Abrams are intent on filling the role of a young female operative. I’m told that Lauren German and Paula Patton are testing for the job. UPDATE: I’m told that Kristen Kreuk will also test for the role…. Superbad‘s Joe Lo Truglio is replacing Fred Armisen in the role of nudist Wayne Dunbar in Wanderlust, the Judd Apatow-produced comedy for Universal which David Wain is directing from the script he wrote with Ken Marino. Jennifer Aniston, Paul Rudd and Justin Theroux star in the comedy about a couple that detours from a mundane life to a commune. Generate-repped Lo Truglio just completed the Universal comedy Paul… Ari Graynor has landed the female lead opposite Jonah Hill in The Sitter, the David Gordon Green-directed Fox comedy. She’ll next be seen opposite Hilary Swank and Sam Rockwell in Conviction, and stars opposite Anna Faris in What’s Your Number next spring. UTA and Principal Entertainment rep her… Using Twitter (the new publicist) John Cusack informed the world today that he’ll play Edgar Allen Poe in The Raven. This isn’t going to be great news to Sylvester Stallone, whose dream is to play Poe.

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EXCLUSIVE: Paramount Picks ‘Hurt Locker’s Jeremy Renner To Co-Star With Tom Cruise In ‘Mission: Impossible 4′

Mike Fleming

BREAKING:: So Paramount Pictures won’t be screen-testing any young actors to star opposite Tom Cruise after all. I’ve learned that the studio has just chosen Jeremy Renner to infuse new blood in its Mission: Impossible franchise. Renner is the Oscar-nominated star of The Hurt Locker and will star alongside Cruise in the fourth installment of the franchise that will begin production in the fall as a reboot. Brad Bird is directing and Cruise is producing with JJ Abrams.

Paramount has struggled to find the right co-star to play the operative opposite Cruise. One factor was  selecting an actor who could potentially carry the series on his own down the line, should Cruise’s Ethan Hunt character not continue to be the emphasis. While Cruise is expected to return for a fifth installment, production chief Adam Goodman wanted a guy who could grow into a leading man in his own right. The studio boss was interested in actors like Tom Hardy and Chris Pine, but they were booked. So the studio planned to test a group of young actors later this week, and Deadline spent all Tuesday going back and forth with the studio over candidates Kevin Zegers, Christopher Egan and Anthony Mackie (the latter of whom starred with Renner in The Hurt Locker). But it was clear that Paramount wasn’t sure what it was going to do. Those tests have been canceled now (Mackie, another seasoned actor poised for … Read More »

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Paramount And Tom Cruise Test Actors For ‘Mission: Impossible 4′s Young Lead

Mike Fleming







This week, Paramount Pictures and director Brad Bird will begin testing actors to star alongside Tom Cruise in Mission: Impossible 4. I’m told that three of the actors who’ll test with Cruise on Thursday and Friday are Vampire’s Kevin Zegers, Letters to Juliet star Christopher Egan, and Anthony Mackie, who starred in the Oscar-winning The Hurt Locker. Cruise is producing the film with JJ Abrams, and Paramount Pictures is co-financing with David Ellison’s Skydance.

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Oscar Talk For Noomi Rapace; She’s Up For ‘Sherlock Holmes 2′ & ‘Mission Impossible 4′



Oscar season officially begins September 1st. And already I hear Hollywood types everywhere discussing the films from Stieg Larsson book The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, they’re wondering aloud if breakout star Noomi Rapace could get an Academy Award for playing Lisbeth Salander. After all, Sweden’s Yellow Bird released the film back in 2009, and the other two pics in the trilogy were made for television and cut down for the big screen. I’ve now confirmed that she is eligible. Because  Music Box Films released director Niels Arden Oplev’s Dragon Tattoo version in a Los Angeles County theater for a qualifying run this past March, thus making Rapace’s performance eligible. I’ve learned that Music Box Films is about to hire an Oscar publicist, probably Melody Korenbrot, to promote Noomi for a Best Actress nomination. That’s right, Best Actress. She’s already won the Swedish equivalency of that for the film. Her new agents at UTA and managers at Magnolia are comparing her to Marion Cotillard, who appeared in a small foreign film, came out of nowhere to be nominated and then win the Best Actress Academy Award, then landed big roles in major studio tentpoles. ”You can have that same journey. You speak English better than she does,” she’s been told.

These are the kinds of Hollywood success stories I love. “She is realizing a dream,” an insider tells me. Since arriving in town over the weekend, Rapace has been taking meetings with a slew of directors, producers,  and studio production execs.” I’m told that, already, Warner Bros’ Greg Silverman wants … Read More »

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