With production set to begin next month, the Hotel for Dogs is about to turn off its vacancy sign. In June, I alerted you to the project when Thor Freudenthal was tapped to direct Lois Duncan's children's book from the '70s, about two orphaned teens who hide stray dogs in an abandoned hotel. After getting a director, Eric Roberts' offspring, Emma Roberts, was tapped to star as one of the kids, and then Don Cheadle signed on to play the orphans' social worker. Now we've got much of the cast in place, although there's still no familial cohort for Roberts in sight.

Topping the recent additions is Friends alum Lisa Kudrow, fresh off the upcoming Butler/Swank romance, P.S., I Love You. She will play the foster parent of the two dog-loving kids, which will be a bit of a contrast to her other upcoming work -- she's going to produce and star in a black comedy called Intense Girl Scouts. The other new cast member is Johnny Simmons, who recently hit the screen in Evan Almighty, and who is already set to play the young Denny Colt in The Spirit. Since the brother spot is still open, Simmons will be playing Roberts' crush.

They don't have too much time left, so hopefully they pick a co-star soon. Otherwise, it'll be mighty weird to see Roberts act with an imaginary person, and it will be an entirely different story. Instead of a feel-good tale of two kids and some cute canines, she'd be talking to people who aren't there and surrounding herself with dogs -- first step, foster, second step, asylum!
categories Movies, Cinematical