Callan McAuliffe
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Shooting of coming-of-age drama set for spring

Australian actor Callan McAuliffe, who played the young Jay Gatsby in “The Great Gatsby,” will star in coming-of-age story “Skateboarding with Saddam.”

Producers are aiming to shoot in the spring in Israel and Los Angeles.

“Skateboarding with Saddam” is produced by Doug Claybourne (“The Mask of Zorro”) and Sandy Hockenbery with the writer/ director team of Daniel Lir and Bayou Bennett-Lir of Dolce Films.

The project, inspired by the experiences of the directors,  ollows a young American-born recent high school grad and avid skateboarder on his summer vacation in Tel Aviv as Saddam Hussein threatens war on the city — forcing him to decide between returning to the safety of Los Angeles or staying with his friends and the girl that he loves.

His grandmother will be played by Israeli actress Gila Almagor (“Munich”).

McAuliffe is also starring in the indie drama “Hacker,” with shooting set to begin on Nov. 28 in Toronto, Dubai, Thailand and New York. He will soon be seen in the remake of the Japanese anime “Kite,” alongside Samuel Jackson, and in the U.K. sci-fier “Our Robot Overlords,” with Ben Kingsley and Gillian Anderson.

McAuliffe is repped by CAA, RGM, and Felker, Toczek, Gellman and Suddelson.

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