Back when the news came out about the cast for the Hitcher remake, I lamented the fact that Sean Bean has somehow turned into the foreign guy that Hollywood tends to cast as a heavy in pretty much anything (either that or he's a really boring, barely-written token male), a tendency that is very much at odds with both his early career and a lot of the TV work he does in England. Well, today comes news that he's been cast in a part that might actually allow him to, you know, act a little bit -- hooray!

Variety is reporting that Bean and fellow Brit Tilda Swinton will play the leads in Come Like Shadows, and independently-financed project being produced by the WB-based Milk & One Sugar. The film is a version of the Macbeth story that, while it will be set during an appropriate time, is expected to be (and this is where things get a little wonky) "user-friendly to a contemporary audience." God only knows what that means, but it makes me a little nervous, just because we can handle Shakespeare that isn't dumbed down, dammit! For Bean, the gig is a return to Macbeth -- he played the role on stage in London three years ago.

Both Steven Soderbergh and Luc Besson are involved in the film as well (the former will executive produce, and post-production will take place in Besson's EuropaCorp facilities), which makes it sound like it might be sort of big and shiny and, just maybe, good. Production begins this fall in Scotland; director will be John Maybury.