Christian Bale, Casey Affleck Will Go For Bro in Crazy Heart Filmmaker's Follow-Up

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Crazy Heart writer-director Scott Cooper isn't holding back with the follow-up to his double-Oscar-winning filmmaking debut, dialing in Christian Bale, Casey Affleck, Sam Shepard and Zoe Saldana (not to mention producers including Leonardo DiCaprio, Ridley Scott and Relativity Media mogul Ryan Kavanaugh) for the family crime-and-redemption drama Out of the Furnace. Read on for full details just over the transom from Relativity; adjust your Oscar 2013 pools accordingly.

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(Beverly Hills, Calif.) April 5, 2012 – Relativity Media has closed deals with Oscar®-winner Christian Bale (The Fighter), Oscar®-nominated Casey Affleck (The Assassination of Jesse James By the Coward Robert Ford), Zoe Saldana (Avatar) and Oscar®-nominated Sam Shepard (Safe House) to star as the lead roles in the upcoming gripping and gritty drama currently titled Out of the Furnace, written and directed by the critically-acclaimed Scott Cooper (Crazy Heart), it was announced today by Relativity’s Co-President, Tucker Tooley. Bale will star as older brother Russell Baze in the film alongside Affleck who will play the role of younger brother Rodney Baze Jr. Saldana has also been cast as Bale’s love interest Lena Warren and Shepard will play Red, Russell and Rodney Baze’s uncle. Production is set to begin in Braddock, Pennsylvania later this month.

Relativity Media will release the film theatrically in the U.S. Red Granite, the Los Angeles based film production, finance and international sales company has acquired foreign rights outside of the U.S. and will handle international sales. Red Granite International President Danny Dimbort and Co-President Christian Mercuri will begin shopping the film to buyers in Cannes next month.

In making the announcement, Tooley said, “This is a meaty script with characters as strong as they are complex, and we needed powerhouse actors who complement the story. Christian, Casey, Zoe and Sam each approach everything they do with heart and conviction. We can’t wait to see what each of them brings to this film,” says Tooley.

The film is a drama about fate, circumstance, and redemption. Russell and his younger brother live in the economically depressed Rust Belt, and have always dreamed of escaping and finding better lives. But when a cruel twist of fate lands Russell in prison, his brother is lured into one of the most violent and ruthless crime rings in the Northeast - a mistake that will almost cost him everything. Once released, Russell must choose between his own freedom, or risk it all to seek justice for his brother.

Producing are Appian Way’s Leonardo DiCaprio (J. Edgar) and Jennifer Killoran (The Ides of March) alongside Scott Free’s Ridley Scott (The Grey), Tony Scott (Man on Fire) and Michael Costigan (American Gangster) as well as Relativity’s CEO Ryan Kavanaugh (The Fighter).

Bale and Affleck were both represented by WME in the deals. Saldana and Shepard were both represented by ICM in the deals.

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