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Paul Giamatti Is Friar Lawrence To Douglas Booth & Hailee Steinfeld’s ‘Romeo & Juliet’; Says ‘The Goon’ Looks Dead

Paul Giamatti Is Friar Lawrence To Douglas Booth & Hailee Steinfeld's 'Romeo & Juliet'; Says 'The Goon' Looks Dead

Paul Giamatti has pretty much done it all. Drama, comedy, horror, satire, action and hell, even musicals (if you don’t remember “Duets” he’s also in the forthcoming “Rock Of Ages“). But Shakespeare? Looks like he’s gonna cross that one off his list too.

Variety reports Giamatti will take the role of Friar Lawrence in the upcoming “Romeo & Juliet” featuring “True Grit” star Hailee Steinfeld and Douglas Booth as the star-crossed lovers. In case you slept through English class, the Friar foreshadows the tragic end to the story, and is called upon by the young couple for counsel and to marry them. He will likely be one of the few older dudes in a cast rounded out by “Gossip Girl” guy Ed Westwick and Kodi Smit-McPhee. In development for most of last year, this one will finally get rolling in Italy this month with Carlo Carlei at the helm and a script from “Downton Abbey” hotshot Julian Fellowes.

But one project you can take off Giamatti’s list is “The Goon.” The animated film was being produced by David Fincher and was based on the comics by Eric Powell, and early footage shown off at Comic-Con in 2010, gave it a noirish but supernatural “Sin City” vibe. But after that, word on the project kind of disappeared. Well IFC asked Giamatti — who was to voice one of the characters — about the project at Sundance and didn’t have much hope for anyone who might’ve been anticipating it. “I have no idea what the hell happened,” Giamatti bluntly said. “I asked and no one knows. I guess they just ran out of money.”

So, shed a tear but not to worry, there’s much more Giamatti coming this year as in addition to that ’80s musical, he’s got David Cronenberg‘s “Cosmopolis” and “John Dies At The End” on the way as well.

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