The Casting Couch: November 15, 2006

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The Joel Schumacher directed pic, Town Creek, has found a couple of leads in Dominic Purcell and Jesse Metcalfe. The vampire horror centers on two brothers on a mission of revenge who become trapped in a harrowing occult experiment that dates back to the Third Reich. Production is apparently eyeing a March 1, 2007 start. Lionsgate will distribute. This will be Schumacher and Purcell’s second soiree into the vampire genre as Schumacher directed the 1987 teen horror The Lost Boys and Purcell starred as Dracula in Blade: Trinity. [The Hollywood Reporter]

After National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation I can’t remember a National Lampoon pic I thought was funny or even cared about, and they have released plenty all under the expectation that old classic comedies would create interest in their second rate movies. Too bad Paris Hilton + National Lampoon does not equal success, but something that might is the news out of Variety telling us that the 36-year-old brand is partnering with the Farrelly Brothers through their Conundrum Entertainment production house on National Lampoon’s Bag Boy, centered on an underdog teen who discovers he’s got the talent to excel in the world of competitive grocery bagging. The project was originally written by Hans Rodionoff as Champion Fill, but has since been rewritten by Mort Nathan (Kingpin, Boat Trip), who’s also directing. Of course, just the association with the Farrellys doesn’t mean the movies are going to be good, but it is at least a start. [Variety]

The ex-“Boston Legal” sex pot Rhona Mitra has just found herself yet another role, this time in the futuristic action thriller Doomsday for Rogue Pictures and writer/director Neil Marshall. The pic is set three decades after a lethal virus tore through a major country, leading to the country’s walling off. When the virus, known as the Reaper, resurfaces in another country, an elite group is dispatched to the infected country to find a cure. There, they end up shut off from the rest of the world and must battle through a landscape that has become a waking nightmare. Mitra plays the leader of the elite group. Marshall wrote and directed the best horror of 2006 so far, The Descent, and production is set to begin on Doomsday in early 2007. [The Hollywood Reporter]

Jay Baruchel and Rose Byrne are set to star in Pushing Up Daisies, a dark comedy to be directed by Chaz Thorne. Pic was written by Thorne and centers on young man (Baruchel) who inherits a funeral parlor only to find that the business is dying — because nobody in town is. He teams up with a young embalmer (Byrne) to turn the business around, and the two of them leave a trail of suspicious deaths in their wake. Shooting begins today in Halifax, Nova Scotia. [The Hollywood Reporter]

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