Hugh Grant is joining The Man From U.N.C.L.E.
Grant has signed on for a supporting role in the Guy Ritchie film adaptation of the 1960s spy series. Steven Soderbergh was attached to direct the movie, but left after Warner Bros. decided the budget should not exceed $60 million.
Tom Cruise was initially supposed to play the lead role of special agent Napoleon Solo, who works for the United Network Command for Law Enforcement (U.N.C.L.E.) The 51-year-old exited the film in May in order to focus on producing and starring in Mission: Impossible 5, which is set to begin filming by the end of the year. The timing of both films was too much to manage, so Cruise left The Man From UNCLE.
Man Of Steel star Henry Cavill stepped in to replace Cruise. He confirmed the news in June, saying, “Things are full-steam ahead. It’s all very early days. But it’s gonna happen.”
The Lone Ranger star Armie Hammer will play special agent Illya Kuryakin. He was excited to be working with Cavill on the film.
“I would have loved to work with Tom, but at the same time, I’m also excited to do it with Henry, because it adds a different twist to the movie,” he said.
The Man From UNCLE ran from 1964 to 1968. Napoleon Solo and Illya Kuryakin were played by Robert Vaughn and David McCallum, respectively.
Alicia Vikander (Anna Karenina) will star as the female lead.
The Man From UNCLE starts filming in September. The film is an “origin story that tells of the first pairing of two spies, one American, one Russian.” The description goes on to say that the two are initially hostile toward each other, unlike in the original series.
Hugh Grant most recently appeared in Did You Hear About The Morgans and Cloud Atlas.