Joaquin Phoenix looks set to follow up his critically-acclaimed work in Walk the Line by reuniting with his The Yards director, James Gray. The two will collaborate on We Own the Night, a thriller set during in the 1980s struggle between Russian organized crime and the NYPD. The story, which Gray also wrote, will focus on a night-club manager (played by Phoenix) who struggles to save his cops brother and father, both of whom are being targeted by gang hitmen. (It sounds exciting, but why is a nightclub manager trying to save cops? Can't, I don't know, other cops help them out?) Also in the cast are Robert Duvall (hopefully playing the dad) and Eva Mendes whose role is undefined, though she'll surely spend some time wandering around looking hot.

Interestingly, this movie marks a return of sorts for Gray to the subject matter of his first film (Little Odessa), which was also a crime story involving New York's Russian immigrant community. Though We Own the Night will be only his third film, Gray - who also writes all of his projects - has shown in the past that he's very good with small, emotionally intense stories. He also tends to get very strong performances from his actors, all of which make this latest effort sound awfully promising.