'The Pacific' star joins Brad Pitt in zombie apocalypse movie

“The Pacific” star James Badge Dale is going back into battle, albeit against an already-dead enemy.

Dale is in negotiations to join Brad Pitt in Paramount’s “World War Z,” set 10 years after a global zombie epidemic. Paramount had no comment on the casting.

Marc Forster is directing from J. Michael Straczynski and Matthew Carnahan’s script, which is adapted from Max Brooks’ popular novel, told in oral history form from various perspectives around the world.

Pitt will play a researcher for the U.N. Postwar Commission, while Mireille Enos of AMC’s “The Killing” was previously cast as his wife, a mother of two girls.

Dale will play Capt. Speke, an American soldier who trusts his instincts and is wise beyond his years. The character tries to alert authorities that the zombie threat is real, and is stuck in a military detention center when the zombie outbreak begins.

Pitt and his Plan B shingle are producing the big-budget pic, which will be co-financed by David Ellison’s Skydance Prods. Production is slated to begin this July in London, Malta and other locales overseas.

While Dale is best known for his small screen roles in Fox’s “24″ and AMC’s “Rubicon,” his feature career is picking up some serious steam. Thesp recently appeared in Robert Redford’s “The Conspirator” and he’s also wrapped a pair of high-profile indies — Joe Carnahan’s survival tale “The Grey” and Steve McQueen’s drama “Shame,” which stars Michael Fassbender and Carey Mulligan.

Dale previously appeared in the Plan B-produced Oscar winner “The Departed.” He’s repped by CAA and MJ Management.

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