Sacha Baron Cohen's Dictator Seeks A Female Lead, Jason Mantzoukas In Negotiations
It's been just over a year since Paramount paid Sacha Baron Cohen a fortune to pick up what was then an untitled "goat herder" comedy, and is now the politically tinged, improv heavy comedy The Dictator. With a title in place and production set to start in New York and Morocco in May, it's also time to build a cast around Cohen, who will play two roles as the dictator of an oppressed comedy and a goat herder. According to THR Kristen Wiig, Gillian Jacobs and Anna Faris are at the top of the list for the female lead, and TV stalwart Jason Mantzoukas is in negotiations to play Cohen's sidekick.
With Borat's Larry Charles directing and the casting directors seeking out actors with a strong background in improv, it seems that there will be at least some off-the-cuff element to the film, though with Cohen playing two roles the entire scenario is a lot more complicated. Here's the more thorough plot description given to THR:
"the heroic story of a dictator who risked his life to ensure that democracy would never come to the country he so lovingly oppressed." Cohen is said to play dual roles of a goat herder and a deposed foreign ruler who gets lost in the U.S.Before you get too excited about seeing either Wiig, Jacobs or Faris in a major movie role, THR's inside sources are careful to emphasize that there are still other names in the mix, and nothing is guaranteed. Mantzoukas, on the other hand, seems to be a done deal-- the actor who played Dennis Feinstein on Parks and Recreation and Rafi on The League would be taking on his first major feature role.
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