WHO Regina King
THE MOVIE “If Beale Street Could Talk”
THE DEAL The star of ABC’s “American Crime” will appear in a new drama from “Moonlight” filmmaker Barry Jenkins, Deadline reports. “If Beale Street Could Talk” is based on James Baldwin’s 1974 novel about a pregnant Harlem woman trying to prove that her boyfriend has been falsely accused of rape. King is said to be playing a “key role” in the film alongside Stephan James (“Race”) and newcomer KiKi Layne. Production has already begun in New York.
WHO Annette Bening
THE MOVIE “The Seagull”
THE DEAL Sony Pictures Classics has acquired domestic and many international rights to Michael Mayer’s film adaptation of Anton Chekov’s classic stage play, according to Variety. The film stars Bening as Irina, an actress whose visit to her brother’s country estate sets off a chain of romantic entanglements. The film, which also stars Saoirse Ronan and Elisabeth Moss, is scheduled for release next year. Benning plays another actress, the Oscar-winner Gloria Grahame, in the biographical drama “Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool,” due in theaters Dec. 29.
WHO Aaron Taylor-Johnson
THE MOVIE “A Million Little Pieces”
THE DEAL The star of the “Kick-Ass” movies and his wife, director Sam Taylor-Johnson (“Fifty Shades of Grey”), are making the film version of James Frey’s partially fabricated memoir from 2003. Frey’s book was heralded as a brave account of addiction and recovery until major portions — including Frey’s alleged criminal record and the supposed suicide of a girlfriend — came under scrutiny by reporters. Frey later apologized, and refunds were offered to any book buyers who felt duped. The Taylor-Johnsons are expected to sell their adaptation project at the upcoming American Film Market.