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Nick Cassavetes has made a lot of attempts at being a jack of all trades, starting out in a career as an actor before moving on to directing films as varied as the 1997 relationship drama She's So Lovely and the 2007 crime film Alpha Dog. But by far his biggest success, and one he's never been able to match, was 2004's The Notebook-- yes, Nicholas Sparks probably gets the lion's share of the credit for writing the book it was based on, but Cassavetes put his name on it, and you'd think that success would lead to a whole lot of others in the same vein.

But Cassavetes, for better or for worse, seems dead set on expanding into other genres, and he's getting ready to do it again with Kristen Stewart to accompany him. Variety reports he's signed on to direct Cali, a drama that Stewart became attached to a few weeks ago. She'll play one-half of a conning couple who sell a fake snuff film and skip town with the cash in hand. The problems start up when she has to return to help out her little sister, but somehow get around the fact that she's faked her own death, not to mention left behind a lot of angry former business partners and other people who don't necessarily want to see her again.

It sounds like a seamy criminal milieu similar to the one in Alpha Dog, so Cassavetes clearly knows his way around it, and for all of Stewart's fame from the Twilight films, she also seems attracted to dark stuff like this lately. In a few weeks she'll be at the Cannes Film Festival with the adaptation of Jack Kerouac's On The Road-- in which a lot of drugs are taken, a lot of women are mistreated, and a lot of time is wasted-- and even while she was stuck playing Bella Swan, she was cutting her hair into a mullet for The Runaways or playing a prostitute in Welcome to the Rileys. Many of us are still skeptical that Stewart has a lot of range as an actress, but to her credit, she seems continually set on proving us wrong.

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