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James Marsden is in final negotiations to star opposite Cameron Diaz in helmer Richard Kelly’s horror film “The Box.”
Marsden and Diaz will play an unhappily married couple who receive a box from a stranger who tells them that if they push a button on the box, they’ll receive a hefty amount of cash — and someone they don’t know will die.
Kelly adapted the $30 million Media Rights Capital production from the Richard Matheson short story “Button, Button,” first published in Playboy in 1970. Matheson adapted the story for an episode of CBS’ mid-’80s revival of “The Twilight Zone.”
Marsden also is in talks to appear in a cameo role in Sean Anders’ comedy “Sex Drive,” playing the brother of a horny teen (Josh Zuckerman) who drives cross-country to lose his virginity to a girl he meets online.
Landing the lead opposite Diaz is the latest breakthrough for Marsden, who first caught the public’s attention in the “X-Men” trilogy. After roles in “Hairspray” and “Superman Returns,” he nabbed the lead opposite Katherine Heigl in the upcoming romantic comedy “27 Dresses.”
The Weinstein Co. is repping foreign rights to the project at this week’s AFM and has closed several international territories.
Marsden is repped by Endeavor and Andrea Pett-Joseph at Brillstein Entertainment Partners.
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