George Clooney, Ryan Gosling hitting campaign trail for “Ides of March”

By Sean O’Connell George Clooney is moving forward with his political drama “The Ides of March,” based on Beau Willimon’s play “Farragut North.” Clooney and regular collaborator Grant Heslov adapted the script. The A-list actor will direct and star.

It was reported that Clooney secured independent financing for his production from Exclusive Media Group and Cross Creek Prods., according to the Hollywood Reporter. Yesterday, Production Weekly tweeted that Clooney “plans to begin filming in Detroit this February,” and that Ryan Gosling would be in the lead role of a press spokesman managing a presidential campaign race. Clooney will play the candidate Gosling backs, while Paul Giamatti is on board as a rival campaign manager. Marisa Tomei and Evan Rachel Wood round out the cast.

“Ides” appears to put Clooney back into “Goodnight, and Good Luck” territory after the brief pit stop through slapstack comedy (“Leatherheads”). Similar material earned the director a series of Oscar nominations, including Best Director. No telling yet if “Ides” holds similar aspirations, though with a February shoot, it could be ready for an awards run in late 2011.

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