'Locker' lands 3 in Iraq story


Jeremy Renner, Anthony Mackie and Brian Geraghty are toplining "The Hurt Locker," an Iraq War drama from director Kathryn Bigelow. Ralph Fiennes and Guy Pearce also have cameos in the film.

Written by Mark Boal and inspired by true events and recently declassified information, "Locker" follows an elite Army Explosive Ordinance Disposal team in present-day Baghdad that fights an onslaught of bombs and snipers.

Renner will play the leader of the team, while Mackie and Geraghty are members of it. Fiennes is a mercenary; Pearce is another member.

Bigelow, Boal, Nicolas Chartier and Greg Shapiro are producing.

The film is a Voltage Pictures/First Light/Kingsgate Films production. Voltage Pictures will handle sales on the film and financed it with Grosvenor Park.

Filming is scheduled to begin next week in Jordan and Kuwait.

Boal is a journalist, previously a writer-at-large at Playboy, and was embedded with a bomb squad several years ago. He extrapolated his experiences into a fictional story grounded in real events.

"The idea is that it's the first movie about the Iraq War that purports to show the experience of the soldiers," Boal said from Jordan. "We wanted to show the kinds of things that soldiers go through that you can't see on CNN, and I don't mean that in a censorship-conspiracy way. I just mean the news doesn't actually put photographers in with units that are this elite."

Boal said the idea of doing a topical movie is one factor that led him to jump into the movie business.

"If you look at the history of war movies, with the exception of a couple of movies during World War II that were more like propaganda, swashbuckling jingoistic stuff, most war movies don't come out until the war was over," he said. "It's really exciting for me, coming out of the world of journalism, to have a movie come out about a conflict while the conflict is still going on.

"The medium of film can be revelatory about a topic," he added. "It's not commenting on something that is history, it's showing something that is real, in today's life."

Renner most recently starred in Fox Atomic's "28 Weeks Later" and will next be seen in "The Assassination of Jesse James" opposite Brad Pitt. He is repped by CAA, Untitled Entertainment and Nelson Felker Toczek Davis.

Mackie, repped by Endeavor, Inspire Entertainment and Loeb & Loeb, recently wrapped shooting Kimberly Peirce's Iraq War drama "Stop Loss," which is set stateside.

Geraghty, repped by Endeavor and Roklin Management, appeared with Mackie in "We Are Marshall." His credits include "Jarhead," Sam Mendes' drama about the first Gulf War, as well as "Bobby."

Fiennes worked with Bigelow in "Strange Days." He is repped by CAA, Dalzell & Beresford in the U.K. and Lichter, Grossman, Nichols and Adler.

Pearce is repped by CAA, Shanahan Management in Australia and attorney David Webber.