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Noah Baumbach steps in to rewrite and diversify Tower Heist

02.20.2010
TOWER HEIST is that Brett Ratner film Dave reported on a couple of days ago that was being called a "black OCEAN'S ELEVEN". A wrench got thrown into that idea when it was announced that Ben Stiller would be stepping in to replace Eddie Murphy.

But don't expect Stiller to become some sort of black Jew a la Sammy Davis Jr. It appears the once one-colored cast will now be diversifying itself via script rewrites that will now be conducted by writer/director/Wes Anderson collaborator Noah Baumbach (FANTASTIC MR. FOX, THE SQUID AND THE WHALE, THE LIFE AQUATIC WITH STEVE ZISSOU).

And the story already seems to be diverging quite a bit. According to THR's Showbiz 411 blog, the film will go from "being a pure heist movie to the story of a bunch of blue collar guys on a mercy mission. It turns out the main tenant of this Trump Tower-like building has bilked the employees’ pension fund in a huge Ponzi scheme."

Brett Ratner apparently wants James Caan in the role of the Bernie Madofff-like villain, though only Stiller is actually confirmed. Baumbach's upcoming dramedy GREENBERG (which stars Stiller) opens in New York and L.A. on March 19 and then rolls out limitedly on March 26.
Extra Tidbit: Baumbach directed and had a hand in writing the SNL Digital Shorts "Clearing the Air" and "New York Underground" back in 2008.
Source: THR

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