There is perhaps no actorly presence more reassuring in Hollywood than that of Jeffrey Wright. An excellent actor, as capable of channeling Basquiat as hanging out with James Bond, it’s no surprise he’s been courted by a number of high-profile directors over the years including Oliver Stone, Jim Jarmusch, Jonathan Demme, Ang Lee and this year alone, both George Clooney and Stephen Daldry. Well, Wright will once again class up another movie that is already boasting a pretty strong cast.
The actor has boarded the upcoming noir, “Broken City,” joining Mark Wahlberg, Russell Crowe, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Barry Pepper. Set to be directed by Allen Hughes, the dark tale follows Billy Taggart (Wahlberg), an ex-cop thrown off the force after shooting a 16-year-old kid. Eight years on, he’s working as a private detective and is hired by the colorful incumbent (Crowe) in the New York mayoral race to investigate his wife’s (Zeta-Jones) infidelity. Taggart, however, digs up much, much more, including a shady real estate deal in a story of city corruption that is not unlike “Chinatown.” Wright will play a police commissioner who has a complex history with the mayor.
Rounding out the cast are Natalie Martinez as Wahlberg’s actress girlfriend, “Gray’s Anatomy” star Justin Chambers as an actor in a movie with Martinez (meta!), veteran Griffin Dunne as a real estate developer, and James Ransone (aka Chester from “The Wire“) as his son.
Production kicks off soon, but does this sound like Oscar bait to you? Well guess again. It’s a straight genre flick which will explain the January 18, 2013 release date for the movie, but with this cast, this will be one to watch.