CATEGORIES Movies, Cinematical
Has Ben Affleck finally found his next directing project? According to the Hollywood Reporter, Affleck is in early negotiations to direct 'Argo,' a project based on a 2007 Wired magazine article about the 1979-80 Tehran hostage crisis. Affleck pals George Clooney and Grant Heslov will produce the political thriller that has comic overtones -- in more ways than one. The title of the article, 'How the CIA Used a Fake Sci-Fi Flick to Rescue Americans from Tehran,' chronicles an effort by the CIA and the Canadian government to rescue six U.S. diplomats from the U.S. Embassy that was controlled by Iranian revolutionaries. To fool the guards, the CIA created a story that the six diplomats were actually a Hollywood crew scouting a movie titled 'Argo.' Using that subterfuge, the six were able to escape. Legendary comic writer/illustrator Jack Kirby's artwork was used by the CIA as proof that the movie existed. Truth is indeed stranger than fiction.

Now that it appears that 'Dark Shadows,' the big-screen adaptation of the 1960s supernatural TV series, will finally see the light of day, we can expect a flurry of casting reports relating to the Johnny Depp starring-Tim Burton directed film. Yesterday we reported that Jackie Earle Haley and Bella Heathcoate were in talks to star in the film; today Deadline has revealed that Eva Green - who played the treacherous Vesper Lynd opposite Daniel Craig in 'Casino Royale' -- is in negotiations to take the female lead. She would play Angelique, a powerful witch who has a love-hate relationship with 200-year-old vampire Barnabas Collins (Depp). The Warner Bros. film will begin shooting this spring for a 2012 release.

Jason Segel has segued easily from 'Forgetting Sarah Marshall' to 'How I Met Your Mother' to the upcoming 'Muppets' -- and now he'll play a 1980s 'Undercover Cop' for DreamWorks and busy Steven Zaillian's Film Rites shingle (Zaillian, who adapted 'The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo' for director David Fincher and will be fine-tuning the script the new 'Jack Ryan' outing, will produce). Though the studio is mum on the exact nature of the story, the film -- a comedy -- is said to be inspired by the true story of a former cop who infiltrated the New Jersey criminal underworld. [The Hollywood Reporter]

David Chase has finalized the cast for his untitled film directorial debut: 'Everybody Loves Raymond's' Brad Garrett has signed on for a feature role in the music-driven story set in 1960s suburbia. James Gandolfini, Bella Heathcote, Christopher McDonald, Molly Price and comedian Lisa Lampanelli have already joined the Paramount project, which is set to begin principal photography in New York. The creator and producer of 'The Sopranos' described the film as revolving around "a postwar, post-Depression era parent (Gandolfini) who has given his kid every advantage that he didn't have growing up, but now can't help feeling jealous of the liberated, more adventurous destiny his son is able to enjoy." [Deadline]

Director Shawn Levy will re-team with his 'Real Steel' star Hugh Jackman on an untitled action-adventure film for Fox that will be written by "Lethal Weapon" and "Lost" writer Carlton Cuse. 'Real Steel,' a futuristic boxing tale about 2,000-pound robot fighters, will open October 7. [TheWrap]