Hartman, Cross enlist for ‘Soldiers’

Comedic actors Phil Hartman and David Cross have been added to the cast of the DreamWorks-Universal co-production “Small Soldiers,” which director Joe Dante began shooting on Nov. 3.

“Small Soldiers,” which blends live action with computer animation, is set for a summer ’98 release. Previously announced were headliners Kirsten Dunst and Gregory Smith, playing suburban kids who are unwittingly drafted into a war between rival toy prototypes.

Hartman, currently in the TV series “NewsRadio,” will play Phil Fimple, the world’s most annoying neighbor. He worked previously with Dante in the HBO movie “The Second Civil War” and was seen in “Sgt. Bilko,” among other credits.

Cross, best known for his role in the HBO hit “Mr. Show,” will portray a nerdy toy designer. His films include “Men in Black,” “The Cable Guy” and “The Truth About Cats and Dogs.” His deal for “Small Soldiers” was brokered by Jason Heyman and David DeCamillo at UTA, his manager, Tom Sarkes, and his attorney, Michael Gendler.

Also added to the cast were Wendy Schaal and Dick Miller. Schaal, who worked with Dante on “The ‘Burbs” and “Innerspace,” plays Fimple’s wife. Miller plays the part of a truck driver who delivers toys. He has worked with Dante on eight films.

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