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Ben Foster last made a big impact with a deeply committed and unsettling role in the super-tiny indie The Messenger, which snagged two Oscar nominations including one for his co-star Woody Harrelson and reminded a lot of us, once again, what a promising young actor he is. Foster's reacted strangely to all the buzz the movie got him, though, signing on for a role in the Jason Statham-starring The Mechanic (out next year) and now, according to Deadline, agreeing to play Mark Wahlberg's sidekick.

Foster has joined the cast of Contraband, an English-language remake of an Icelandic hit with a plot straight out of pretty much every other crime thriller you've heard of. Wahlberg plays a former smuggler trying to go straight, dragged in for one last job when his wife's brother botches a gig. Kate Beckinsale will play the wife, and Foster will play Wahlberg's "best friend and right hand man, who helps him take on the dangerous job."

The one thing I like about this is that Foster is a fairly unpredictable actor, and could bring some weird depths to this story that you might not see in the basic plot description. Actually, he won't even be the weirdest element of this-- Baltasar Kormakur, who wrote, produced and starred in the original Icelandic film, will be directing the American remake as well. I have a hard time understanding how this is supposed to go well-- isn't Kormakur way too invested in the original to handle a remake?-- but hey, it promises a movie that will be a lot more interesting than the generic plot suggests.

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