Just as Armie Hammer is seeing the rewards of a job well done, so too is Inception‘s breakout star Tom Hardy. The LA Times reports that Shia LaBeouf and Tom Hardy are joining forces for The Wettest County in the World, a 1920’s Prohibition drama from director John Hillcoat (The Road, The Proposition).
This movie has been in the works for some time, and has attracted some of Hollywood’s hottest young talent; at various times, LaBeouf, Ryan Gosling, Scarlett Johansson, Amy Adams, Michael Shannon, and Paul Dano have all been rumored to be interested. Around this time last year, though, the movie changed its name, funding fell through, and it looked like certain death for the project. But now it’s back on with the original name.
The Wettest County in the World is written by Nick Cave and is based on a book of the same title from author Matt Bondurant. /Film has a solid synopsis:
In 1928, a pair of thieves accost Bondurant’s real life great-uncle Forrest at his Franklin County, Va., restaurant. They’re after a large cache of bootlegging money and end up cutting Forrest’s throat. The story of his survival and his trek to a hospital 12 miles away has taken on mythical proportions by the time Sherwood Anderson arrives in Franklin County in 1934 to research a magazine piece on the area’s prolific moonshiners. Soon after Anderson’s arrival, two anonymous men appear at the same hospital, one with legs meticulously shattered from ankle to hip, the other one castrated, with the by-products of the deed deposited in a jar of moonshine. The arc of the story lies between the attack on Forrest and that on the two men.
Sounds like a great fit for Hillcoat’s sensibilities, and I’m stoked to see LaBeouf potentially break away from his Transformers persona and evolve into an actor people actually take seriously. Who knows? Maybe even some of the rumored cast from the first time around will return now that the project is up and moving again. Shooting is scheduled to begin in spring of 2011.