Actress to star with Freeman, McAvoy

Universal Pictures has set Angelina Jolie to star alongside James McAvoy and Morgan Freeman in “Wanted,” an action film based on a graphic novel that Timur Bekmambetov will direct.

Pic will be Jolie’s next, with shooting to begin in Eastern Europe in May.

McAvoy will play a young man who discovers his father is an assassin, only to learn shortly thereafter that his dad has been murdered. The youth is drafted to follow in his father’s footsteps. Jolie will play an assassin who teaches the ropes to the wannabe killer.

Script was originated by Michael Brandt and Derek Haas, and Jolie took the role after a rewrite by Dean Georgaris (“Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life”) to tailor the character for her.

Marc Platt, Jim Lemley, Jason Netter and Iain Smith will produce.

Deal marks the second recent U commitment for Jolie, who’ll star this fall for director Clint Eastwood in drama “The Changeling,” to be produced by Imagine Entertainment partners Brian Grazer and Ron Howard and Malpaso’s Rob Lorenz.

She will next be seen starring as Mariane Pearl in “A Mighty Heart,” produced by Brad Pitt’s Plan B and opening June 22 via Paramount Vantage. She then stars in the Robert Zemeckis-directed “Beowulf,” which opens in the fall. Jolie is also booked to star in “Atlas Shrugged,” a Randall Wallace-scripted adaptation of the Ayn Rand novel for Lionsgate.

Jolie is repped by Media Talent Group topper Geyer Kosinski.

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