Casting: McConaughey, Damon, Cooper, Jane

The Free State Of Jones
Oscar-winner Matthew McConaughey is said to be starring in “The Hunger Games” director Gary Ross’ $65 million-budget Civil War drama “The Free State Of Jones” at IM Global and STX Entertainment. Filming begins in the first quarter of 2015 with Scott Stuber on board to produce.

Ross wrote the screenplay which follows Newton Knight, a Southern unionist who fled the battlefield and rallied Confederate Army deserters to his so-called Knight Company against the Confederacy. Knight went on to marry the former slave of his grandfather and is still a divisive figure to this day . [Source: Screen]

Matt Damon has signed on to star in “The Descendants” and “Sideways” director Alexander Payne’s “Downsizing” for 20th Century Fox. No word on when filming will begin.

Damon plays a man who comes to the realization that his life would be much better if he shrunk himself. Payne and Jim Taylor co-wrote the screenplay. [Source: Deadline]

Coming Through the Rye
Oscar winner Chris Cooper is set to play famed author J. D. Salinger in Emmy winning writer James Steven Sadwith’s directorial debut “Coming Through the Rye” which is currently in production.

The story is a coming-of age drama set in 1969 involving two teenagers, the sensitive young boy Alex Wolff and the quirky young girl Stefania Owen, as they search for the famed reclusive “Catcher in the Rye” author. [Source: THR]

Laurence Fishburne and Thomas Jane are starring in Adam Alleca’s “Standoff” which is currently being shopped around AFM by Voltage Pictures.

Jane plays a grieving combat veteran who offers shelter at his farmhouse to an orphan on the run from Fishburne’s sadistic assassin character. Tove Christensen, Lee Clay, Eric Gozlan and Michael Wexler will produce. [Source: Screen]