Roman Polanski is preparing to make his largest movie yet: the dramatic thriller Pompeii, which is said to be budgeted at a whopping $130 million. Scott brought you news of the project in February, and now more details have emerged. The lead role will be Marco Attilio Primo, "a young Roman engineer sent to Pompeii in A.D. 79, just days before the devastating eruption of Mt. Vesuvius." Polanski is looking to cast an A-list star as Primo. (Sorry, but your dreams of a trailer announcing "George Wendt...in...Pompeii!" are not going to come to fruition). Polanski and Robert Harris are currently finishing up the screenplay, which will be based on Harris' best selling novel of the same name. Polanski has said Pompeii will use lots of CGI effects, and will be shot largely on Spanish soundstages, backlots, and locations.
Pompeii is one of the most expensive European film projects ever, so its easy to see why they're not taking any chances with casting. I'm fine with them going for a name, but here's hoping they draw from a wider pool than they usually go to for these movies. We've seen the Colin Farrells and Brad Pitts of the world do these historical epics before, I hope we get a more interesting choice. Every great hero needs a love interest, and a variety of European actresses, "including a top Italian thesp," are being considered for the lead female role. (If I had to guess here, I'd say that "top Italian thesp" might be the gorgeous Monica Bellucci?) Pompeii's projected five month shoot starts this August, and the movie should erupt into theaters some time next year. What do you think, will Rome and Roman be a good match?