David Leitch’s Bullet Train expands cast with Hiroyuki Sanada
David Leitch (Hobbs & Shaw) is keeping the casting train rolling for his upcoming action thriller Bullet Train as The Last Samurai and The Wolverine star Hiroyuki Sanada has joined the ensemble roster led by Brad Pitt (Once Upon a Time in Hollywood), according to Deadline.
Bullet Train will mark the eighth collaboration between Leitch and Pitt, who first worked together in 1999 on Fight Club on which Leitch worked as an uncredited stunt double for Pitt, followed by 2001’s The Mexican, Ocean’s Eleven and Spy Game, the latter two in which he doubled again for Pitt and helped coordinate the martial arts stunts on the Tony Scott-helmed film. Leitch would once again double for Pitt in 2004’s Troy and 2005’s Mr. & Mrs. Smith and would later reunite with the star in 2018’s Deadpool 2, in which Pitt cameoed as Vanisher and Leitch directed.
Plot details for the film are currently being kept under wraps, but it is based on the Japanese novel Maria Beetle by Isaka Kotaro. The cast for the film, led by Pitt, already includes Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Kick-Ass), Andrew Koji (Warrior), Joey King (The Lie), Brian Tyree Henry (Atlanta), Zazie Beetz (Deadpool 2), Michael Shannon (The Shape of Water), Logan Lerman (Hunters) and Masi Oka (Spies in Disguise).
On top of directing, Leitch will supervise the script written by Zak Olkewicz (Fear Street). Leitch and Kelly McCormick will produce the project via their company 87North along with Antoine Fuqua (The Magnificent Seven, Training Day, The Equalizer) and Kat Samick (The Equalizer, Southpaw, Infinite). Ryosuke Saegusa and Yuma Terada are executive producing in behalf of Kotaro. Brittany Morrissey is the executive overseeing the film for Sony Pictures.
Leitch and McCormick recently signed a first-look deal at Universal and produced the action film Nobody, starring Better Call Saul’s Bob Odenkirk, which is expected to release in February 2021. The duo is also developing a biopic of Jutta Kleinschmidt, the first and only woman to win the brutal off-road endurance race known as The Dakar Rally, as well as the rights to her book My Victory at Dakar.
(Photo Credit: Greg Doherty/Getty Images for Asian World Film Festival)