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As the world gears up for the action star summit that is The Expendables 2, producer Avi Lerner is looking ahead to the next installment in the testosterone-fueled franchise — and he has already convinced one major star to join the team.
The producer also is circling a number of other icons of Hollywood machismo, with an eye towards further expanding a dream ensemble that already includes the likes of Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bruce Willis, Jean-Claude Van Damme and Chuck Norris.
“We’ve approached Clint Eastwood to be one of the guys,” Lerner says. “We’re talking to Harrison Ford. [And we want] Wesley Snipes when he comes back from prison.”
In the sequel, opening in theaters on August 17, the band of mercenaries reunites for a revenge mission against Jean Vilain (Van Damme), who killed one of their own and is threatening the world with a deadly weapon.
Meanwhile, promoting the film overseas, star and co-writer Stallone tells reporters in London that the cast and crew had a difficult time overcoming the death of a stuntman during the film’s shoot.
“The stunt team took it very, very hard and shut down for quite a while,” Stallone told journalists in London, reports BBC News. “It’s happened twice before on films I’ve been on and it’s never easy.”
The stuntman, Kun Liu, was killed last October during an accident involving a boat explosion on Bulgaria’s Lake Ognyanova. Another stuntman, Nuo Sun, was also seriously injured in the accident. Liu’s family has since sued producers Nu Image and Millennium Films, as well as the film’s stunt coordinator, for wrongful death.
Stallone’s visit to promote the film’s overseas release comes a month after his own son, Sage Stallone, was found dead in his Los Angeles home at age 36.
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