Joins Danes as co-star

Giovanni Ribisi (“That Thing You Do!”) has been cast in the MGM feature “The Mod Squad,” an update of the groovy TV series about a trio of dropouts who are rehabilitated and become police officers.

In MGM’s “Squad,” Ribisi will play Pete, a member of the hipster cop unit assembled to work undercover in the Los Angeles club scene. Pic is slated for an April 27 start.

Ribisi joins Claire Danes (“William Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet”), who already has been cast as the femme lead.

Film is produced by Alan Riche, Ben Myron and Tony Ludwig. Aaron Spelling and David Ladd are exec producing. Scott Silver will direct from a screenplay he wrote with Stephen Kay.

The original “Mod Squad” series was produced by Spelling and ran 100 episodes from 1968-73.

Ribisi recently finished filming Garry Marshall’s “The Other Sister,” opposite Juliette Lewis, and will next be seen in Steven Spielberg’s “Saving Private Ryan,” starring Tom Hanks. He also has appeared in the NBC sitcom “Friends,” indie pics “Some Girls” and “Scotch and Milk,” and features “subUrbia” and “Lost Highway.”

Ribisi’s deal was brokered by Scott Henderson of the William Morris Agency and manager Joel Stevens.

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