The British actor is graduating from the voice of Iron Man’s computer to a superhero role for the 2015 tentpole sequel. Paul Bettany has signed to play the Vision in The Avengers: Age Of Ultron, alongside Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Captain America (Chris Evans), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and The Hulk (Mark Ruffalo). The Daily Mail reports that Bettany and Jeremy Renner (Hawkeye) were spotted this week at Shepperton Studios near London meeting with helmer Joss Whedon. Bettany, who voiced JARVIS in the three Iron Man pics and 2012′s The Avengers, next appears in the Johnny Depp sci fi thriller Transcendence and is making his directorial debut with the indie drama Shelter, starring Jennifer Connolly and Anthony Mackie.
EXCLUSIVE: Newly launched BiFrost Pictures has come aboard to produce and finance Shelter, Paul Bettany‘s upcoming directorial debut. Bettany also wrote the NYC-set feature which is set to star Jennifer Connelly and Anthony Mackie. Filming starts later this year in the Manhattan area with Robert Ogden Barnum, Katie Mustard and Bettany producing alongside BiFrost’s Daniel Wagner. Cassian Elwes, Aimee Sheih, Melanie Greene, Dana Brown, and Clay Floren are executive producers. Plot details are being kept under wraps, but Voltage Pictures will take the project to Toronto next month repping international rights while Elwes and UTA rep domestic rights. “It’s my intention to surround myself with hugely talented people and then claim all the credit. I have great actors, great producers and a great city to shoot in- plus I’m hoping to keep alive the time-honored tradition sacred to directors and seduce my leading actress,” said Bettany.
EXCLUSIVE: Paul Bettany is in negotiations to star opposite Johnny Depp in Transcendence, the Alcon Entertainment film that marks the directing debut of Wally Pfister, Christopher Nolan’s cinematographer on Inception and many other films. Alcon partners Andrew Kosove and Broderick Johnson are producing, and Nolan and Emma Thomas are exec producers. The film was scripted by Jack Paglen and the plot is being kept under wraps. The film will start production in the spring, and Bettany will play a scientist. Warner Bros is distributing. Next up for Bettany is Iron Man 3 (he provides the voice of Tony Stark’s computer Jarvis), and he stars in the thriller Blood with Mark Strong. He was last seen in The Avengers and Margin Call. Bettany is repped by UTA, Affirmative Entertainment, and Independent Talent Group. His UK manager is 42 M&P’s Kate Buckley-Sharma.
Paul Bettany has pulled out of Showtime’s drama pilot Masters of Sex. The British actor was to play 1960s human sexuality pioneer William Masters in the project, an adaptation of Thomas Maier’s book Masters of Sex: The Life And Times Of William Masters And Virginia Johnson, The Couple Who Taught America How To Love. It chronicles the lives, romance and pop culture trajectory of Masters and Johnson, whose research touched off the sexual revolution. This was going to be Bettany’s American series debut and was considered a coup for Showtime and series producer Sony Pictures TV, especially given The Beautiful Mind co-star’s known difficulty to commit to projects. He recently passed on several big roles, including the lead in The King’s Speech, which earned Colin Firth an Oscar. Complicating things on Masters Of Sex was the fact that Bettany had a say in the casting of the female lead, which had stalled the process. The pilot will now launch a new search for both leads, with Lizzy Caplan talked about for Johnson.
In his first foray into American television, British actor Paul Bettany is in negotiations to star in the Showtime drama pilot Masters of Sex. The project, from Sony Pictures TV, is an adaptation of Thomas Maier’s book Masters of Sex: The Life and Times of William Masters and Virginia Johnson, the Couple Who Taught America How to Love. It chronicles the lives, romance and pop culture trajectory of 1960s human sexuality pioneers Masters (Bettany) and Johnson whose research touched off the sexual revolution. Michelle Ashford wrote the script and is executive producing with Timberman/Beverly Prods’ Sarah Timberman and Carl Beverly and Sony TV-based Judith Verno, as well as John Madden, who is set to direct. Maier and Pettany’s manager Melanie Greene serve as producers. UTA-repped Bettany, who has co-starred in such movies as A Beautiful Mind, Master And Commander and The Da Vinci Code, currently stars in Margin Call and will next be seen in The Avengers.
Universal and director Tom Hooper want Hugh Jackman for the role of Jean Valjean in Les Miserables. So who might stalk him in the role of Javert? I’m told that Paul Bettany is a candidate and that he read for the role and sang the songs from the Cameron Mackintosh-produced stage hit. Mackintosh is producing the film with Working Title partners Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner, and Bill Nicholson has written the script. The intention is to begin production before year’s end, somewhere in Europe. Let’s see if this goes anywhere.
EXCLUSIVE: Paul Bettany, who’s currently starring in the Screen Gems genre thriller Priest, has just signed with UTA. Since his breakthrough on Gangster No. 1, the Royal Shakespeare Company-trained Bettany has starred in a wide range of films, from The Da Vinci Code to A Beautiful Mind, Wimbledon, Master & Commander, Creation and The Tourist. He next stars in the Sundance Film Festival financial-crisis drama Margin Call, coming in the fall. Bettany had been repped by WME, and he continues to be managed by Melanie Greene at Affirmative Entertainment and UK-based Independent.
The JC Chandor-directed drama Margin Call sold to Roadside Attractions and Lionsgate after an all night bargaining session. The film stars Kevin Spacey, Paul Bettany, Jeremy Irons, Zachary Quinto, Penn Badgley, Simon Baker, Mary McDonnell and Stanley Tucci. That cast alone had buyers circling the modestly-budgeted film because of its ancillary prospects. Talk last night had the film in the low-seven figure range, and plans for a theatrical release that’s described as a joint release between the companies. I haven’t heard deal figures yet, but the film becomes the second Sundance sale, after Like Crazy sold to Paramount and Indian Paintbrush.
The Margin Call deal was brokered by Cassian Elwes and UTA’s Rena Ronson, with Roadside’s Howard Cohen and Lionsgate’s Steve Beeks. The film premieres Tuesday night at the Eccles. Chandor wrote the script, which takes place in a 24-hour period at the start of the financial collapse of 2008. A group of characters at a financial firm make decisions that have moral implications as the firm teeters on the brink of collapse. Myriad Pictures is selling international, and brokered many of those deals at AFM.
TORONTO: JC Chandor, who just wrapped writing and directing the indie financial crisis thriller Margin Call, has made a two-picture writing deal at Warner Bros. His first project: Portofino, an international thriller for Leonardo DiCaprio’s Appian Way that is a potential vehicle for the star. Meanwhile, Margin Call is creating buzz in Toronto — partly because Kevin Spacey is here, and also because Myriad Pictures is selling international rights. It stars Jeremy Irons, Paul Bettany, Stanley Tucci, Zachary Quinto, Penn Badgely, Simon Backer, Demi Moore and Mary McDonnell, about how the 2008 financial meltdown impacted a variety of players at a Wall Street investment bank over 24 hours.
Luke Y Thompson is covering the Con for Deadline:
PRIEST, based on the Tokyopop-published graphic novel, is brought to you by the folks behind the agreeable B-movie LEGION. While many of the original Manga take place in the past, the movie serves as a sequel, set in a post-apocalyptic world. We’re shown a clip that is “not MPAA approved.” It begins with a dark, BLADE RUNNER-style cityscape. A hooded figure carrying a rosary walks through. It’s Paul Bettany, and he has a red cross tattooed on his face. A vampire attacks – this vampire is like a wild, wet beast, with no eyes, no pigment – think the demons in CONSTANTINE, on the offchance you actually saw that.
Jeremy Irons is the final piece of an impressive cast for Margin Call, the indie film by director JC Chandor that is shooting in New York City. Irons is the chief executive of a financial firm in a 24-hour period during the first signs of the near collapse on Wall Street. Irons joins Kevin Spacey, Demi Moore, Zachary Quinto, Paul Bettany, Penn Badgley, Simon Baker, Stanley Tucci and Mary McDonnell. Chandor wrote the script, and Quinto is producing with his Before The Door Pictures partners Neal Dodson and Corey Moosa, and Benaroya Pictures’ Michael Benaroya and Robert Ogden Barnum and Joe Jenckes. Myriad Pictures is selling international territories on the film, with Myriad CEO Kirk D’Amico exec producing. The film is three weeks into its shoot.