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"Milk" men: Hirsch, Brolin line up for Van Sant-directed biopic

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Milk_l Emile Hirsch and Josh Brolin (pictured) are aligning themselves with yet another prestige project. The two, who are currently earning Oscar buzz for their roles in Into the Wild and No Country for Old Men, respectively, are in negotiations for Milk, the Gus Van Sant biopic starring Sean Penn as Harvey Milk, the former San Francisco city supervisor and gay-rights activist. Brolin is in talks to play Dan White, the elected official who assassinated Milk in 1978, while Hirsch is eyeing the role of street hustler-turned-Milk aide, Cleve Jones. James Franco (In the Valley of Elah), meanwhile, is gearing up to play Milk’s longtime lover, Scott Smith. Milk, which is scheduled to begin shooting Jan. 21 in San Francisco, is being made by Groundswell Productions and will be released by Focus Features.