With a career marked by several winning trips into the western genre, director John Hillcoat is heading to the present for his long-gestating next project, Triple Nine, and he’s pulling together a cast that is all 10s. (You guys can groan for that if you want.) The Anonymous Content thriller is circling around Casey Affleck, Chiwetel Ejiofor and Michael B. Jordan, who are all in talks to star, joining the already attached Christoph Waltz and Cate Blanchett. Heist movies aren’t the usual choice for awards bait, but this cast is too strong not to assume the script is deeper than its straightforward plotline.
According to TheWrap, Affleck is nearly set to replace Charlie Hunnam in the role of a young LAPD officer who is targeted by a group of thieves who plan on killing him in order to draw law enforcement to one part of town while other members of their crew are on the other side of town, pulling off a daring heist. Ejiofor will be the leader and the brains behind the operation, while Jordan will play a member of Ejiofor’s gang doubling as a cop who gets himself partnered with Affleck. The film, which was also once attached to Lawless star Shia LaBeouf, will be the first feature for screenwriter Matt Cook, and Hillcoat’s first film since last year’s Lawless.
This is a really strong trio to hire so close to awards season. Ejiofor is currently sitting in the prime spotlight, garnering Golden Globe and SAG Award nominations for his passionate performance in Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave, as well as a Golden Globe for his work in the miniseries Dancing on the Edge. He is attached to star in Craig Zobel’s sci-fi adventure Z for Zachariah with Chris Pine.
Affleck is also getting multi-role attention for his work as a ruthless lover in David Lowry’s outlaw romance Ain’t Them Bodies Saints and in Scott Cooper’s crime drama Out of the Furnace. You can expect to hear about him a lot more next year as he’ll next star in Christopher Nolan’s presumably epic space thriller Interstellar with half of Hollywood.
Jordan, who broke out in a huge way with Chronicle in theaters and the TV double dose of Friday Night Lights and Parenthood, has attracted his own critical acclaim recently for his turn as Oscar Grant in the tragic, mostly-true-life drama Fruitvale Station. And he’s doing a great job of turning that talk into jobs, as he’s been rumored to be joining both the upcoming Fantastic Four reboot and J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars: Episode VII. You can definitely expect to see him in the upcoming comedy (if you want to call it that) That Awkward Moment.
Production on Triple Nine is set to start next year, and reportedly has several other big names in talks for supporting roles. And for a bonus visual treat: A huge name in the video game world a couple of years ago was Rockstar’s Red Dead Redemption, for which Hillcoat created and directed the short film Red Dead Redemption: The Man From Blackwater, which you can watch below.