Shortly before Christmas, Fox Searchlight offered Noomi Rapace the female lead opposite Tom Hardy in Michael Roskam’s drama “Animal Rescue” and Variety has learned that the “Prometheus” star has accepted the role and closed her deal.Chernin Entertainment and Mike Larocca are producing the pic, which author Dennis Lehane adapted from his own short story that first appeared in “Boston Noir.” Production is skedded to begin this spring in New York, where Fox Searchlight is relocating the story rather than film in Massachusetts, where Lehane adaptations “Mystic River,” “Shutter Island” and “Gone Baby Gone” all took place. Hardy stars as a man looking to reform his criminal ways who gets mixed up in a bad heist and a killing resulting from a lost and contested pit bull. Rapace will play Nadia, a woman with a scar across her entire neck who crosses paths with the protag when he finds a wounded puppy outside her home. Rapace had been looking for a chance to work with Hardy, as the duo were also considering working together on Scott Free’s long-gestating project “Child 44.” Rapace, who recently starred in Ridley Scott’s “Prometheus” and Guy Ritchie’s “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows,” will next be seen opposite Colin Farrell in “Dead Man Down,” which reteams the original “Girl With the Dragon Tattoo” star with helmer Niels Arden Oplev. She also stars opposite Rachel McAdams in Brian De Palma’s thriller “Passion.” Rapace is repped by UTA and Magnolia Entertainment. Rapace most recently starred in Ridley Scott’s Prometheus and the Brian DePalma-directed Passion, latter of which made its debut at the New York Film Festival. Hardy’s repped by CAA, Rapace and Roskam by UTA, with Rapace managed by Magnolia Entertainment and Roskam by Anonymous Content.