Long List of ‘Fantastic Four’ Casting Rumors and Mullign Joins Gosling in ‘Drive’

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We begin today’s roundup with a massive update on Fox’s proposed Fantastic Four reboot, which as of now will not be called Fantastic Four Reborn as previously thought. As for the casting rumors, ScreenRant reports Adrien Brody and Jonathan Rhys Meyers are currently in the running for the role of Reed Richards/Mr. Fantastic. The casting of an Oscar winner like Brody would seem to stick with the theme of casting credible actors in such movies, but it bears noting that his name has already been discussed in connection to Edgar Wright’s Ant-Man movie for Marvel Studios.

Amber Heard (Zombieland) is reportedly being pursued to play the Susan Storm/Invisible Woman character in the reboot, adding her to a shortlist that already includes recent X-Men: First Class dropout Alice Eve. Jessica Alba previously portrayed the character, so it looks like Fox is sticking with the curious strategy of casting for sex appeal with a character who spends much of her screen time being invisible.

The name of virtual unknown Kevin Pennington is the only one being thrown for the role of Johnny Storm, the role previously played by Marvel’s future Captain America, Chris Evans. Pennington’s screen experience includes such substantial roles as the uncredited “Party Stud” in Miss March and an uncredited four episode run on “90210.”

There’s no one being mentioned in connection to The Thing, but you may remember me mentioning a while back that the reboot will feature a completely CGI version of the character. Micheal Chiklis wore a rubber suit and all sorts of make up to portray the character in the two previous Fantastic Four films.

Apparently they’re waiting for First Class to prove successful before they officially give the project the green light.

Moving on, Carey Mulligan (An Education, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps) is said to be in negotiations to star in the action thriller Drive for Bronson director Nicolas Winding Refn. Ryan Gosling is already attached to star, and Jay A. Fernandez at Risky Business is reporting that “Breaking Bad” star Bryan Cranston is also negotiating to join the cast. Drive, the adaptation of a James Sallis novel, tells the story of a Hollywood stuntman (Gosling) who also freelances as a getaway driver during robberies.

As first reported by Reuters, Angelina Jolie will begin shooting a movie set during the 1992-1995 Bosnian War this fall. Jolie insists “the film is a love story, not a political statement,” and will feature a cast of “as many local people as possible.” The film will focus on a couple who meet on the eve of the war and the effect it has on their relationship, although it is unclear (to me at least) if this will be a starring vehicle for the actress or a project with which she will take a more hands-on approach. This sounds a lot like Australia to me, so let’s hope it turns out a lot better than that.

Deadline‘s Mike Fleming reports Sandra Bullock and Tom Hanks are circling the Warner and Paramount co-production Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. Stephen Daldry (The Hours, The Reader) will direct the Eric Roth (Forrest Gump, Benjamin Button) adaptation of the Jonathan Safran Foer novel about a 9-year-old genius whose father is killed on 9/11. The boy finds a key left behind by his father and goes on a mission to figure out what it unlocks. Daldry and producer Scott Rudin have been working to get the project off the ground for the past five years, and it now looks like it could be Bullock’s first post-Oscar project.