Emile Hirsch has been set to star in the title role of Warner Bros. Pictures’ and Village Roadshow Pictures’ new actioner Speed Racer, under the direction of the Wachowski brothers. The announcement was made today by Jeff Robinov, President of Production, Warner Bros. Pictures.
Robinov stated, “Emile Hirsch is one of today’s fastest-rising young stars, which makes him the perfect choice to take the wheel of Speed’s Mach 5. He continues to showcase his talents in a variety of challenging roles and we are thrilled to have him in the title role of ‘Speed Racer.'”
Emile Hirsch most recently earned critical acclaim as the charismatic Johnny Truelove in the real-life crime drama Alpha Dog, and as skateboarding vanguard Jay Adams in Lords of Dogtown. He next stars as Christopher McCandless in Into the Wild, Sean Penn’s screen adaptation of Jon Krakauer’s bestseller, which is set for release this September. His additional film credits include Imaginary Heroes, The Girl Next Door, The Mudge Boy, The Emperor’s Club and The Dangerous Life of Altar Boys, in which he made his feature film debut.
Slated for release on May 9, 2008, Speed Racer is being written and directed by Larry and Andy Wachowski, and produced by Joel Silver under his Silver Pictures banner. The film not only marks a reunion for the Wachowski brothers and Silver, who previously worked together on the “Matrix” movies and V For Vendetta, but is the brothers’ first writing/directing collaboration since the “Matrix” movies.
Based on the classic series created by anime pioneer Tatsuo Yoshida, the live-action Speed Racer will follow the adventures of the young race car driver Speed in his quest for glory on and off the track in his thundering Mach 5. The film will feature other characters that fans of the show will remember, including Speed’s family and his mysterious arch-rival, Racer X. The new high-octane actioner will combine the kind of revolutionary visual effects and cutting-edge storytelling that have become the benchmarks of the Wachowski brothers’ films, bringing Speed Racer into the 21st century.
Speed Racer is a Warner Bros. Pictures presentation, in association with Village Roadshow Pictures, of a Silver Pictures Production.