Odds and ends from Wednesday:
- After cracking us up as conniving Hollywood agent Ari Gold on HBO's Entourage, Jeremy Piven has signed on to play a conniving American diplomat in Peter Berg's The Kingdom. Pic, which already sports a dynamite cast of Jamie Foxx, Jennifer Garner, Chris Cooper and Jason Bateman, tells of a group of U.S. FBI agents who are sent to investigate the bombing of an American facility in the Middle East.
- Maverick Films is looking to lock and load after snatching up the spec script Shoot, written by Ron Krauss and Tom Hietter. Picture The Fast and the Furious, but with gunslingers instead of souped-up automobiles. Pic, which Krauss will also direct, revolves around the "underground world of contemporary gunslingers" and follows a young shooter on his quest to challenge the sport's undefeated champion.
- As we previously reported (without any official word), Zooey Deschanel is now confirmed to be taking on the role of Janis Joplin in Penelope Spheeris' upcoming biopic, Gospel According to Janis. Written by Spheeris and Brad Vanderburg, pic will focus on the period of time between Joplin first moving to California and her subsequent death eight years later. I've always thought Deschanel was a bit too "goth" looking to play Joplin, but she definitely has the gritty, indie part down. So, let's see what she does with it.