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James Gandolfini Added to ‘Animal Rescue,’ Starring Tom Hardy and Noomi Rapace

Written by on March 11, 2013 

Making a huge impact with little screen time, James Gandolfini‘s cinematic output for 2012 — Zero Dark Thirty, Killing Them Softly, and, best of all (really!), Not Fade Away — showed that, thank Lord, the actor has shelf life after Tony Soprano. While early word does not point toward this week’s The Incredible Burt Wonderstone as a good way to keep up this little hot streak, some casting news can even out the equation: according to Variety, the upcoming thriller Animal Rescue, from Bullhead director Michael R. Roskam, is getting their own dose of his talent. Everybody can pack it up and go home happy.

Before you do, however, it might be in your interest to know what the guy’s getting into here. As it so happens, Animal Rescue (based on a short story be Dennis Lehane) sees Tom Hardy portray an unassuming New York bartender, one whose life is thrown asunder upon discovering a wounded dog. The abusive owner doesn’t like the cut of this jib, and neither do our protagonist’s bosses — they soon put him in the middle of a heist, making things all the more troublesome. Add in a woman with some shakiness to her past (Noomi Rapace), and you’ll be wondering how this guy even keeps it together. (Not that looking like Tom Hardy doesn’t have its wealth of perks.)

Part of that trouble, by the way, is a character played by James Frecheville, the Animal Kingdom actor who Variety also tell us been added in the role of, ominously stated, “a small-time villain.” The “big-time” baddie has yet to be listed, though that could fall to either Roskam‘s Bullhead star, Matthias Schoenaerts (also of Rust and Bone) or Gandolfini himself. A mob boss isn’t new territory for him.

Animal Rescue is expected to begin production soon.

With the latest signings, does Animal Rescue continue to improve?

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