Having landed its Raphael just before the weekend in the shape of “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” actor Alan Ritchson, Michael Bay hasn’t wasted time locking down the rest of the “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” for the mo-cap-heavy reboot of the comic/animation franchise he’s producing for director Jonathan Liebesman. Deadline reports that the mutant quartet is being filled out by Pete Ploszek as Leonardo, Jeremy Howard as Donatello and Noel Fisher as Michelangelo. The latter’s perhaps the best-known of the quartet, having previously appeared in Liebsesman’s “Battle: Los Angeles,” as well as “Twilight: Breaking Dawn- Part Two” and “Hatfields & McCoys.” Howard seems to be a complete newcomer, while Ploszek is our immediate favorite of the four, given that he appeared in an episode of “Parks & Recreation.” The four join Megan Fox in the film, which opens on May 20th, 2014.
Menawhile, remember that remake of “Endless Love” everyone wanted to see? Yeah, our thoughts exactly. After being announced last August, movement on casting the young leads had been slow going. Well, producer Scott Stuber has found his obsessive young lovers in Alex Pettyfer and Gabriella Wilde. Based on a 1979 novel by Scott Spencer, the 1981 original gave star Brooke Shields her juiciest role as a teenage girl involved in a dark and disturbing relationship. It’s unknown how closely this interpretation will hew to either the original film or novel, but it does have director Shana Feste (director of “Country Strong”) attached, which could mean we’ll see a syrupy, redemptive tale based on past experience. The original script was written by “Gossip Girl” and “Smash” helmer Josh Safran, with Feste since doing a polish. Pettyfer was last seen in “Magic Mike,” and based on his past tabloid encounters could do well playing a total nutcase. Wilde will be seen in the upcoming “Carrie” remake, and was up for Kenneth Branagh‘s “Cinderella” not long ago. There’s no word on when this will start shooting, but w’re waiting to see who they’ll get to redo the theme song. [Variety]
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s version of “Hercules” continues to rush towards its May start date by including more fantastic actors into its cast. Recently, “Dark City” star Rufus Sewell was announced to play Autolycus, Hercules’ teacher, and that’s on top of the revelation that European actor Aksel Hennie will be playing Tydeus, Hercules’ friend. Now, “Shakespeare In Love” alum Joseph Fiennes has been added to the cast as Eurystheus who, according to Greek mythology, Hercules served under for several years. “Deadwood” star Ian McShane is also rounding out the cast as Amphiarus, who is described as a counselor to Hercules. They’re welcome additions to a film that has quite the diverse supporting cast, including John Hurt and Rebecca Ferguson. It’ll need all the help it can get considering its being helmed by Brett Ratner. “Hercules” is set to go before cameras in May, for an August 8th, 2014 release. [Variety]
Finally, can director David O. Russell’s untitled Abscam movie get any better? On top of a cast that already includes Academy-Award winner Jennifer Lawrence, Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Jeremy Renner, and Amy Adams, the movie just announced a few days ago that “Law & Order” alum Elizabeth Rohm would be joining the cast. The production just started shooting Sunday, and has added another lovely lady to the group. “House of Lies” actress Dawn Olivieri has jumped on-board, playing the role of Cooper’s girlfriend. The movie, originally titled “American Bullshit” follows a financial con artist (Bale) and his partner in crime/mistress (Adams) who works with a federal agent (Cooper) to rat out other cons. With production on-going, hopefully a title and a release date will be announced soon. [THR]