Anna Friel joining Bradley Cooper thriller

8:00 PM PST 04/04/2010 by Borys Kit, AP

THR EXCLUSIVE

Anna Friel is in negotiations to join the cast of "Dark Fields," Neil Burger's thriller for Relativity starring Bradley Cooper.

The story centers on a down-and-out writer (Cooper) who gets his hands on a top-secret pharmaceutical drug that makes one smarter. He experiences sudden financial and social success but soon discovers that the drug has lethal and lasting side effects, including "trip-switching," a phenomenon in which time moves with a stop-motion quality. Before long, mysterious antagonists are pursuing him.

Friel will play Cooper's ex-wife, a woman who was a go-getter before their breakup.

Robert De Niro and Abbie Cornish already are cast in the movie, which Universal will distribute via Relativity's Rogue Pictures.

"Fields" is being produced by Leslie Dixon and Scott Kroopf ("Breach") as well as Relativity's Ryan Kavanaugh. Relativity's Tucker Tooley will serve as executive producer.

Friel, repped by UTA and Ken McReddie Associates in the U.K., is coming off an acclaimed run of "Breakfast at Tiffany's" in London's West End. The actress, who earned a Golden Globe nomination for her performance in ABC's "Pushing Daisies," next appears in Woody Allen's "You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger" as well as "London Boulevard," the directorial debut of Oscar-winning scribe William Monahan.
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