Shia LaBeouf might be making more headlines for his, uh, eccentric foray into theater and emailing Alec Baldwin than for his movie work of late, but it doesn’t change the fact that he’s got a compelling, engaging screen presence, and he’s been making some bold and interesting choices since breaking free of the “Transformers” franchise.
The actor, who was last glimpsed at Sundance with “The Necessary Death of Charlie Countryman,” has Lars Von Trier‘s “Nymphomaniac” in the can, and the actor just added another project to his slate, with Deadline reporting that the actor will star in the indie “Villain.” A Black Listed script by Josh Zetumer (who wrote next year’s “RoboCop” reboot, and was one of our Screenwriters On The Rise in 2012), it’s a two-hander about a man confronted and tortured in the mountains by his brother, who blames him for having his kids taken away by social services. David Slade was set to direct the project last year, but he’s given way for “28 Weeks Later” helmer Juan-Carlos Fresnadillo. The casting of the other role should be announced shortly, and filming will presumably begin once LaBeouf is done with David Ayer‘s World War Two picture “Fury.”
And speaking of, he’s got some new company on that project, with news from The Hollywood Reporter that Michael Pena has joined LaBeouf, Brad Pitt and Logan Lerman in the project. The film follows a five-man tank crew who come across a group of German soldiers, and Pena will play the constantly drunk driver. Pena’s too often underused by Hollywood (*cough* “Gangster Squad“), but given that he had one of his best showcases in Ayer’s “End of Watch” last year, we’ve got our fingers crossed for something more muscular. “Fury” will roll into theaters on November 14th, 2014, and Pena can be heard before that in summer animation “Turbo,” and will be seen in David O. Russell‘s “American Hustle.”