Morton joins Allen pic

To begin lensing Aug. 31

Woody Allen’s annual filmmaking effort has begun under the auteur’s characteristic secrecy, but sources said young U.K. thesp Samantha Morton has been cast in the film, slated to start lensing Aug. 31 in New York City.

As with most Allen films, details of the upcoming production are difficult to obtain, with sources revealing only that the film is a period piece. No other actors have been attached to the project, sources said, but Sean Penn has reportedly had discussions with Allen regarding a role.

A spokesman for Jean Doumanian Prods., Allen’s longtime producer, had no specific comments about the new project, and said only that the director shoots a film each year, during the fall.

Fine Line released Allen’s “Deconstructing Harry” last December. Allen is also the subject of the documentary “Wild Man Blues,” which opened last month.

Morton is repped by Creative Artists Agency and by Nicola Van Gelder of Conway Van Gelder Ltd. in London.