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Ben Kingsley Recruited for ‘Ender’s Game’

Fans of Orson Scott Card's 1985 novel Ender's Game have all kinds of probable cause to be worried about how the upcoming film adaptation will turn out, but on cast alone it's well worth at least temporarily feigning optimism. Ben Kingsley has just become the newest addition to a group that includes Asa Butterfield (Hugo) as Ender Wiggin, Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit) as Petra Arkanian and (possibly) Harrison Ford as Colonel Hyram Graff.

This casting reunites Hugo co-stars Kingsley and Butterfield, a combination that has worked well so far for Martin Scorsese's latest and could do quite well for Gavin Hood, director and adaptor of the 1986 Hugo Award-winning (what a coincidence) novel. THR says Kingsley will play "a legendary war hero presumed to be long dead," which is a spoilerish way of identifying him as Mazer Rackham.

Ender's Game takes place in a future where mankind is under attack by an alien race known as "Buggers" and young children are recruited and trained in a space station-type battle school. Ender evolves into a brilliant strategist and leader through playing a zero-gravity game, though he's resented by nearly every other child at the school.

Filming is targeted to begin in February with a scheduled release date of March 15, 2013. OddLot Entertainment, who produced this year's quietly acclaimed thriller Drive, will oversee the film, with Summit Entertainment distributing.


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