The long-gestating 2007 Black List script The Necessary Death of Charlie Countryman, written by Matt Drake, is putting the final touches on its pre-production to-do list, stepping closer and closer to a reality most doubted would ever come. Til Schweiger is set to join titular star Shia LaBeouf in commercial director Fredrik Bond‘s feature debut. Melissa Leo has also been cast as LaBeouf’s dead mother, who lives on from the grave to give her son advice [Variety].
The film revolves around a young man named Charlie Countryman who falls for the beautiful property (Evan Rachel Wood) of a dangerous crime boss (Mads Mikkelsen). In trying to win the hand of the woman he loves, Charlie most endure beating after beating. Schweiger is to play Darko, a Serbian gangster and former soldier in hiding, running a strip club in Budapest (if I wanted to hide, I feel that’s what I’d do as well). James Buckley, one of the stars of the hit international comedy The Inbetweeners Movie, is also being considered for a supporting role in the film.
This is the kind of hip project studios love to push, especially when considering LaBeouf’s continued rising star, so it’s not hard to understand why Countrymen has been saved from development hell over and over again. With a supporting cast as strong as this one behind the young thespian, it’s hard not to get excited. That said, violent romance without much comedy is a hard mash-up to sell. Very few films of this kind make the type of cultural splash as something like Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo + Juliet, a film this project seems to be boring a lot of style from.
Production is set to begin next month in Eastern Europe.
Are you excited to see Shia LaBeouf get beat up over and over again in the name of love?
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