April 05, 2013 2:00am PT by Borys Kit, Kim Masters
Kellan Lutz Nabs Title Role in 'Hercules 3D' (Exclusive)
Director Renny Harlin has found his Hercules in Kellan Lutz.
Lutz, one of the more popular co-stars of The Twilight Saga, has signed to star in Hercules 3D, Nu Image/Millennium’s big-budget take on the Greek demigod.
Harlin (Cliffhanger, Die Hard 2) is directing the $70 million epic, which is aiming to shoot in May in Bulgaria.
"It takes more than a good physique to portray the most legendary, mythological personality in history — and Kellan has exactly that, personality," Harlin tells The Hollywood Reporter. "He's not afraid to explore the strengths and vulnerabilities of the character, and he impressed me with his passion and heart."
The movie is one of two high-profile Hercules movies being made by Hollywood studios; the other is an MGM/Paramount co-production to be directed by Brett Ratner. Dwayne Johnson is playing the hero in the rival project.
While exact plot details are being kept under wraps, Hercules 3D will have at its center a love story between the son of Zeus and the mortal princess of Crete, who was promised to his older brother despite her love for Hercules.
Sean Hood, Harlin and Giulio Steve wrote the script. Producing are Les Welden and Danny Lerner, who also teamed to produce Millennium’s recent action hit Olympus Has Fallen.
Avi Lerner, Trevor Short, John Thompson and Boaz Davidson will executive produce.
"Kellan has the look and charisma that Harlin envisioned for the character," says Davidson. "Renny had him in mind from the start, and we are really excited to have him on board.”
Lutz played Poseidon in Relativity’s 2011 epic Immortals. He is repped by Innovative Artists, Zero Gravity Management and Morris Yorn.
"This is a breakout role for Kellan and a chance to grow and shine as an actor," Harlin says.