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Boniadi had a recurring role in Scandal as Adnan Salif.
Ben-Hur is scheduled for release on February 26, 2016. »
After what has been described as a close race, Homeland star Nazanin Boniadi has landed the role of the female led in MGM and Paramount Pictures’ upcoming Ben-Hur remake, pipping the likes of Kingsman: The Secret Service‘s Sofia Boutella to the part.
Boniadi will now star opposite Jack Huston in the sword and sandals epic, and it’s understood the actress won over the hearts and minds of the casting directors for her chemistry with the Boardwalk Empire star, who is on board to play the titular hero. Previously Man of Steel‘s Ayelet Zurer and Wonder Woman herself, Gal Gadot, were attached to the role, but contract negotiations with DC — which are as far reaching as you’d imagine — forced her to pull out.
With a release date pegged for 2016, we’re still a ways away from seeing Timur Bekmambetov’s bold remake in action, though it’s »
- Michael Briers
Just over one month after Gal Gadot backed out of MGM's Ben-Hur, the studio has brought on Homeland star Nazanin Boniadi as the female lead. Gal Gadot entered talks to play Esther, a female slave who falls for Jack Huston's title character, in mid-October. She was forced to bow out just a few weeks later, citing conflicts with her schedule on Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, where she plays Wonder Woman.
Nazanin Boniadi joins a cast that also includes Toby Kebbell as Messalla, Ben-Hur's former friend who sells him into slavery, and Morgan Freeman, who mentors the title character and teaches him to become a champion chariot racer. Deadline reports the actress beat out a number of candidates for the role. Sofia Boutella (Kingsman: The Secret Service) was the runner-up to land the part, with other contenders including Moran Atias (Third Person) and Natalia Warner (The Double »
A month or so ago Man Of Steel's Ayelet Zurer was in the frame. Before her we were talking about Gal Gadot, who had to drop out in favour of the small indie comic-book curios Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice and Wonder Woman. This morning Timur Bekmambetov's new Ben-Hur finally has its female lead. Homeland star Nazanin Boniadi has grabbed the gig, fending off plenty of other competition by performing the best "chemistry read" with the toplining Jack Huston.Huston is, of course, Judah Ben-Hur himself, with Boniadi playing Esther, the daughter of the slave Simonides. Taken once again from Lew Wallace’s 1880 novel, the new version aims to chronicle the younger days of Ben-Hur and Messala (Toby Kebbell), best friends growing up in Jerusalem. Ben-Hur is a Jewish prince and Messala the son of a Roman tax collector who is packed off to be educated in Rome for five years. »
• The Vampire Diaries’ Paul Wesley will star in Convergence, a vehicle for him to star in and produce. Little is known about the plot at this time, but the film is said to follow a group of underground biotech engineers who experiment with a new technology that exceeds their expectations. Jeff Richard wrote the script. Filming is planned for next spring in Shanghai and Atlanta. [Deadline] • Sam Huntington, of Being Human fame, has been cast as the lead in Finding Sofia. Nico Casavecchia is directing the indie comedy, which follows Huntington as a young filmmaker who buys a ticket to Buenos »
- C. Molly Smith
MGM’s remake of 1959 historical epic Ben-Hur failed to nab Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice actress Gal Gadot (who had to pass on the project due to a scheduling conflict), but it may have managed to get a hold of another powerful woman in Superman’s life all the same.
According to THR, Ayelet Zurer, who played Superman’s Kryptonian birth mother Laura Lor Van in Man of Steel, is circling a role in Ben-Hur, though it’s not the same one that was offered to Gadot. If she ends up committing to the project she’ll play Naomi, the mother of Judah Ben-Hur (Jack Huston).
This marks one of several big projects to come Zurer’s way following last year’s Superman reboot; she recently wrapped production on Last Days in the Desert opposite Ewan McGregor, and has been cast as Vanessa Fisk, the wife of the Kingpin, »
- James Garcia
The casting information about the new take on the Ben-Hur story is coming in quicker than a speeding chariot. With director Timur Bekmambetov looking to set his cast quickly ready for shooting to gear up, Ouija star Olivia Cooke is circling the role of Tirzah, Ben-Hur’s sister.Taken once again from Lew Wallace’s 1880 novel, the new version aims to chronicle the younger days of Judah Ben-Hur (Jack Huston) and Messala (Toby Kebbell), best friends growing up in Jerusalem. Ben-Hur is a Jewish prince and Messala the son of a Roman tax collector who is packed off to be educated in Rome for five years. Upon his return, Messala mocks our hero for his religion. After an accident he pins on his friend, he has him sold into slavery, while imprisoning his mother and sister. Cue a quest for revenge that includes (in the 1959 Charlton Heston film, at any rate) the iconic chariot race. »
If a deal is finalized, Ayelet Zurer will play Naomi, the mother of Judah Ben-Hur (Jack Huston). The story follows Judah as he is sold into slavery by his childhood friend Messalla (Toby Kebbell), which sends him on a journey of vengeance. Morgan Freeman is playing Ben-Hur's mentor, who teaches him the fine art of chariot racing, a skill which will come in handy during the remake's finale.
The story, which was originally written by Keith R. Clarke with rewrites by John Ridley, also follows the parallel tale of Jesus Christ, an aspect of the plot that was in Lew Wallace's original 1880 novel, but left out of the 1959 Ben-Hur adaptation starring Charlton Heston.
While Timur Bekmambetov and the team making the new Ben-Hur already tried unsuccessfully to secure the services of one actress from a Zack Snyder superhero film (Gal Gadot, who had to pass due to her Wonder Woman schedule), they appear to be closer to another. Man Of Steel’s Ayelet Zurer is now in talks to take a role.Taken once again from Lew Wallace’s 1880 novel, the new version aims to chronicle the younger days of Judah Ben-Hur (Jack Huston) and Messala (Toby Kebbell), best friends growing up in Jerusalem. Ben-Hur is a Jewish prince and Messala the son of a Roman tax collector who is packed off to be educated in Rome for five years. Upon his return, Messala mocks our hero for his religion and, after an accident he pins on his friend, has him sold into slavery. Cue a quest for revenge that includes (in the 1959 Charlton Heston film, »
Just two weeks after entering talks to play the female lead in MGM and Paramount's Ben-Hur remake, actress Gal Gadot has backed out, citing scheduling conflicts with her Wonder Woman role on Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.
Production on Ben-Hur isn't slated to begin until early next year, but the actress is also attached to star as Wonder Woman in her own stand-alone movie and Justice League Part 1. Both of those projects were confirmed to hit theaters in 2017, when Warner Bros. and DC Comics announced their massive superhero slate on the same day that the news of Gal Gadot's Ben-Hur casting broke.
MGM and Paramount would not comment on the actress dropping out, and it isn't known if there are other contenders for her role that are currently in the mix. If she would have stayed with the remake, Gal Gadot would have played Esther, a slave who falls for Ben-Hur, »
Update: Looks like her Wonder Woman gig has proved too conflicting for Ben-Hur. Scheduling issues means she's dropped out of talks for the Biblical epic. Though her Justice League duties – including the long-awaited solo Wonder Woman film that has just been confirmed – will keep her busy in the coming years, Gal Gadot isn’t just relying on superhero work to push her career along. She’s now in talks for a lead role in Ben Hur.Taken once again from Lew Wallace’s 1880 novel, the new version aims to chronicle the younger days of Judah Ben-Hur (Jack Huston) and Messala (Toby Kebbell), best friends growing up in Jerusalem before the Roman Empire takes over. Ben-Hur is a Jewish prince and Messala the son of a Roman tax collector who is packed off to be educated in Rome for five years. Upon his return, he mocks our hero for his religion, »
Timur Bekmambetov is amassing quite the cast for his Ben-Hur remake. He’s already got Jack Huston set to lead as the title character, Judah Ben-Hur, a Jewish prince who’s wrongly accused of harming a governor and sold into slavery with Morgan Freeman stepping in as Ildarin, the man responsible for training him to become a top chariot racer. Toby Kebbell will portray the film’s villain, Messala, Ben-Hur’s former best friend who’s responsible for manipulating the aforementioned accident to make Ben-Hur look guilty. Now there are reports claiming that both Game of Thrones’ Pedro Pascal and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’s Gal Gadot are in the mix as well. Hit the jump to find out more about who they may be playing. The Ben-Hur remake is set for a February 26, 2016 release and is expected to go into production in Europe in early 2015. According to THR, »
- Perri Nemiroff
Following the barrage of news about Warner Bros. Pictures' release plans for their DC Comics big screen ventures, which included a 2017 release date for Wonder Woman, the star of the female superhero flick is lining up another lead role before she has to whip out her lasso again. THR has word that Gal Gadot is in early talks to take the female lead role in Paramount and MGM's co-production of Ben-Hur, a new adaptation of the classic Lew Wallace novel of the same name from 1880. Jack Huston has already taken the lead role of the Jewish prince betrayed by his friend Messala (Toby Kebbell) and now the cast is filling out. Gadot would play Esther, a slave that Ben-Hur falls in love with on his journey, but a deal isn't done yet. Also in talks for a role, according to Deadline, is last season's fan favorite "Game of Thrones" star »
- Ethan Anderton
Future Wonder Woman Gal Gadot and Game Of Thrones star Pedro Pascal have joined the cast of Timur Bekmambetov’s remake of the classic Ben Hur. The film, which is in pre-production over at MGM and Paramount, will also star Jack Huston, Toby Kebbell, and Morgan Freeman with Huston playing the title role.
Gadot will play the female lead in the film, thogh we know little more than that. Bekmambetov directs the film, which will star production next year for a February 2016 release.
Source: Various »
- Paul Heath
Movies give Pontius Pilate a bad wrap. Yes, he gave the orders to crucify Jesus Christ. But check canonical Biblical writing and one finds a tinge of reluctance, a man of power caving under the peoples' demands. Plus, would we still be talking about God's Son if Pilate didn't off him in the grisliest way possible? Silver linings. Pending deals, the next on-screen Pilate could add all this nuance with a splash of smarmy charm. Deadline reports that "Game of Thrones" favorite Pedro Pascal is in talks to play Judaea's prefect in the upcoming remake of "Ben-Hur." The film is said to skew closer to Lew Wallace's 1880 novel than the 1959 Charlton Heston-led epic, which chronicled the parallel stories of Jewish prince-turned-slave Judah Ben-Hur's quest for revenge and Christ's Passion. The in the original film, Pilate presides over the major chariot race setpiece and orders Jesus' death. He »
- Matt Patches
Pascal played Oberyn Martell in Game of Thrones season four.
The story of his redemption runs parallel to the life and crucifixion of Jesus, who is active in the region at the same time.
Ben-Hur is scheduled for release on February 26, 2016. »
Even more “Ben-Hur” news.
On the same day with Gal Gadot in talks for the leading lady role in “Ben-Hur,” Deadline discovered HBO’s “Game of Thrones” actor Pedro Pascal is also in negotiations for a part. The site claims he’ll be playing Pontius Pilate, who will play a significant role in the remake of the film.
Pascal played Oberyn Martell or Red Viper of Dorne on the “Game of Thrones. And of course, he had an impressive arena battle in a fight to the death that would just make one’s head explode. »
- Gig Patta
Following the announcement of a standalone Wonder Woman movie, Gal Gadot has also been revealed to be in the running for the female lead of the Ben-Hur remake. Gadot will play Esther in the movie. Since being cast as Wonder Woman in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, the actress has become highly sort after for a range of roles.
The new version of Ben-Hur is being directed by Timur Bekmambetov (Wanted) and is based upon the 1880 Lew Wallace novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of The Christ, with Keith Clarke (The Way Back) and John Ridley (12 Years a Slave) contibuting to the script. It will tell the story of Jewish prince Judah Ben-Hur and his blood fued with childhood friend Messala, a Roman who betrays Ben-Hur, resulting in him being sold into slavery and vowing revenge.
- Thomas Roach
Pontius Pilate plays a significant part in the Ben-Hur remake, which will be much more faithful to Lew Wallace's original 1880 novel, which told the parallel tale of Jesus Christ alongside Ben-Hur's story. In the Bible, Pontius Pilate is the prefect from Judea who oversaw the trial of Jesus Christ and ordered his crucifixion.
Jack Huston is playing the title character, who was betrayed by his longtime friend Messalla (Toby Kebbell), and sold into slavery. Morgan Freeman plays Ben-Hur's new mentor, who teaches him to become a chariot racer, a skill which will come in handy during the epic chariot race towards the end of this remake, mirroring the original Ben-Hur's iconic finale. »
This morning, we heard news that MGM’s remake of the 1959 swords-n-sandals epic, Ben-Hur, had nearly bagged itself a leading lady. Wonder Woman Gal Gadot might be signing on the dotted line to join a cast that so far, consists entirely of chaps. And now we can add another bloke to the ever-expanding call sheet, as Game Of Thrones star Pedro Pascal is also in negotiations for a juicy role.
Earlier this year, Pascal fought valiantly as Oberyn Martell in season four of HBO’s medieval fantasy series. His showiest moment alas came during his last scene, as he fought the hulking monstrosity known as The Mountain. He was an immensely likeable character and it’s a shame we won’t see him return to Westeros. However, if he signs on for Ben-Hur, he’ll still be kitted out in the finest period garb as he’s slated to play Pontius Pilate. »
- Gem Seddon
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