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  • Thought Panem was bad? The Hunger Games actor Josh Hutcherson has joined the cast of The Disaster Artist, director-star James Franco‘s movie about the making of the notoriously shoddy cult film The Room. Franco is working from a script by Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber, and his brother Dave Franco also will have a role. Shooting begins this month in Los Angeles. [The Hollywood Reporter]
  • Melissa Leo, Dianna Agron, and Margaret Qualley are set to star in Novitiate, a 1960s-set drama about a young woman who begins to question her Catholic faith while training to become a nun. Margaret Betts is making her feature directing debut on the film, which she also wrote. The cast also includes Julianne Nicholson, Stacy Martin, Rebecca Dayan, Morgan Saylor, and Maddie Hasson. Production will get underway in Nashville in January. [Variety]
  • Jeffrey Wahlberg, nephew of Mark Wahlberg, is in negotiations for the lead role in Please Don’t Come Back From the Moon, an independent drama about a California desert town in which all the men have abandoned their families. James Franco and Vince Jolivette‘s Rabbit Bandini production company optioned the 2005 novel by Dean Bakopoulos. [Deadline]
  • Tom Riley (Da Vinci’s Demons) and Joanne Froggatt (Downton Abbey) are starring in the British indie Starfish, based on the true story of a couple whose lives are upended when one survives a rare illness but has his four limbs amputated. Bill Clark is directing and wrote the screenplay, based on interviews with the real-life couple, Tom and Nicola Ray. Filming is currently underway across the pond. [Deadline]