'American Idiot' star added to cast of New Regency thriller
Michael Esper, who starred in “American Idiot” on Broadway, has joined the cast of New Regency’s offshore gambling thriller “Runner Runner.”20th Century Fox is set to distribute the pic, which Brad Furman is directing from a script by Brian Koppelman and David Levien. Justin Timberlake and Ben Affleck star alongside Gemma Arterton, Anthony Mackie, Oliver Cooper and Ben Schwartz. When Timberlake’s character is cheated out of his tuition money playing online poker, he flies to Costa Rica hoping to reclaim his losses from the site’s billionaire owner (Affleck) and ends up becoming the corrupt CEO’s right-hand man. Esper will play a tattooed man who is immersed in the online gaming space and like Cooper’s character, works as an affiliate for the poker company. Producers include Appian Way’s Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Davisson Killoran and Double Feature’s Michael Shamberg and Stacey Sher, as well as Koppelman and Levien. Pic will lense in Puerto Rico this month. Esper just ended his run alongside Linda Lavin in the Broadway production of “The Lyons.” After wrapping “Runner Runner,” he’ll start production on NBC’s midseason drama, “Do No Harm.” Previous feature credits include the Ryan Gosling pic “All Good Things” and Ron Howard’s “A Beautiful Mind.” Thesp is repped by Gersh and Lillian LaSalle of Sweet 180.