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Sam Rockwell, who won an Academy Award for his role in Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, is joining Scarlett Johansson in Fox Searchlight’s Jojo Rabbit, the unique Nazi Germany satire from Thor: Ragnarok director Taika Waititi.
The story centers on Jojo, a young boy who longs to be part of the Hitler Youth and whose imaginary friend is Adolph Hitler. He discovers a Jewish girl living in his attic and, after initially trying to find ways to get rid of her, begins to see her as human.
Johansson is playing Jojo’s mother, a woman who is secretly working for the Resistance. Waititi is playing the imaginary Hitler (yes, really).
Rockwell will play a Nazi captain who runs a Hitler Youth camp.
In addition to writing, directing and starring in Jojo Rabbit, Waititi is also producing alongside Carthew Neal and Chelsea Winstanley for Fox Searchlight. Production is expected to begin in late spring.
Rockwell’s turn as a racist cop in Three Billboards saw him sweep the awards race in the best supporting male category, earning a Golden Globe, a BAFTA, a SAG Award and, ultimately, the Oscar. This is the first role he has taken since his prize haul.
The Gersh and Untitled Entertainment-repped actor recently wrapped Adam McKay’s untitled biopic of former Vice President Dick Cheney in which he stars opposite Christian Bale and portrays President George W. Bush. Rockwell will also voice the title character in Disney’s live-action/CG hybrid The One and Only Ivan.
While Rockwell, Johansson and Waititi have not worked together before, they do share one notable connection: Marvel movies. All three have worked in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, with Rockwell appearing in Iron Man 2, Johansson a key player as heroine Black Widow and Waititi as the helmer of last year’s Thor: Ragnarok.
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