CATEGORIES Movies

After several fallow years, Oliver Stone has returned to what he does best: explorations of the dark side of the American Dream. His latest project, 'Savages,' which has been getting a lot of press lately, fits right into this mold: It's the story of two Laguna Beach pot growers who run afoul of the Mexican cartel and must pay a ransom to get back their kidnapped common girlfriend. The film is building up a nice ensemble cast, and has now been given a major boost by the addition of John Travolta, Uma Thurman and Blake Lively, who are in talks to join the cast. Travolta will play a burned out DEA agent, Lively will play O (the kidnapped girlfriend), and Thurman will play O's mom, according to Deadline. They join Taylor Kitsch and Aaron Johnson, who play the two pot growers, Salma Hayek, who plays the role of a Mexican cartel queen-pin, and Benicio Del Toro, who plays a vicious cartel enforcer. The Universal picture begins production in early July.

Dan Fogelman is on a roll. The writer of 'Tangled' and 'Crazy, Stupid, Love' has sold a drama -- with Tom Cruise attached as the lead -- to Warner Bros. for a cool $1.5 million plus. The movie is about a man who has never made a mistake in his life and becomes a politician; his first mistake -- an affair -- causes his life to fall apart, according to TheWrap, which also reported that Fogelman made multiple pitches on Wednesday, with negotiations at Warner Bros. beginning on Thursday morning and being completed by early evening. Impressive.

Brian White has joined the cast of Tyler Perry's upcoming romantic drama 'Good Deeds,' about a man, Glen Deeds (Perry), who becomes enamored with a single mother (Thandie Newton) down on her luck after he tires of his relationship with his fiancee (Gabrielle Union). White would play Tyler's brother. Also in the cast is Phylicia Rashad, Rebecca Romijn, Eddie Cibrian and Jamie Kennedy. The Lionsgate/34th Street film begins shooting in Atlanta on April 25. [TheWrap]