Hey! Elizabeth Banks is in the running to be Effie Trinket in the Hunger Games film and, for the first time, I think that's actually a good choice. Amandla Stenberg [sic] and Dayo Okeniyi will play Rue and Thresh. I don't know who those people are, but good for them. Who will play Haymitch? Who knows? How about Gary Busey? Make it happen. If this movie crashes, let's make sure it burns, too. (Showblitz)
Oh, f*ck me in the eyeball running: Monica Breen and Alison Schapker (co-exec producers on "Fringe") have been tapped by J.J. Abrams to write a top-secret Japanese robot movie about "swashbuckling robots with swords." Man, it's already a given that robots will one day rise up and take over humanity, we don't need to give them any ideas. (Deadline)
James Franco will star opposite Winona Ryder in The Stare. Tell me if this plot synopsis sounds familiar:
The Stare is a drama in which a playwright (Ryder) finds her mind beginning to warp as she struggles to launch her next production. She's plagued by dreams and visions of being watched, but can't decide if she's at the center of a manipulative plot or simply losing her grip on reality. Franco plays one of the performers in the playwright's production.
No word yet on what female star will go down on Ryder. (Deadline)
Cool: That Aaron Sorkin HBO series about cable news may land Marisa Tomei to possibly star as the female exec producer to Jeff Daniels' anchor. Greg Mottolla (Superbad, Adventureland) will direct the pilot. (NYP)
Matt Reeves (Let Me In) will once again take on the vampire genre, directing an adaptation of the Justin Cronin novel The Passage. (Deadline)
If I remember correctly, the list of directors attached to Pride Prejudice and Zombies was David O. Russell, Craig Gillespie, Mike White, and now ... Craig Gillespie, again. The director of the Fright Night remake and Lars and the Real Girl is now officially attached, at least until he drops out. I'm still convinced that, like the Wolverine project, this movie is the product of Nikke Finke's imagination, movie-blog gristle to keep the source links coming. (Deadline)
Joshua Jackson (R.I.P.) will star alongside Bruce Willis and Rebecca Hall in Lay the Favorite, based on the life of waitress turned professional gambler, Beth Raymer. Jackson will play the love interest. Even better, it's directed by Stephen Frears, working from a script by High Fidelity screenwriter, D.V. DeVincentis. (Variety)
Nick Cassavettes has dropped out of the Gotti: Three Generations project starring John Travolta and Joe Pesci because, presumably, he came to his senses. (The Wrap)
Are you following Pajiba on Facebook or Twitter? Every time you do, Bill Murray crashes a wedding.