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Cast puts life into ‘Dead’

Brolin, Collette, Franco set to star

Writer-director Karen Moncrieff has set her follow-up to the critically acclaimed Sundance selection “Blue Car,” lining up Josh Brolin, Rose Byrne, Toni Collette, James Franco, Marcia Gay Harden, Mary Beth Hurt, Brittany Murphy, Giovanni Ribisi, Mary Steenburgen and Kerry Washington for “The Dead Girl.” Lakeshore Entertainment is financing and producing.

Piper Laurie is negotiating to join the cast of the pic, which starts lensing April 17 in Los Angeles. Henry Winterstern brought “Dead Girl” to Lakeshore and will produce along with shingle principals Tom Rosenberg and Gary Lucchesi.

Project centers on the dark mystery surrounding a young woman’s death, which is gradually revealed when the lives of seemingly uninvolved people intersect. Moncrieff will direct from her own script.

Lakeshore will retain international rights to the pic and is currently in talks with several studios about a domestic distribution deal.

Moncrieff’s debut, “Blue Car” screened at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival, where it was acquired by Miramax Films. It later garnered two Independent Spirit Award nominations, one for female lead Agnes Bruckner and one for Moncrieff for first screenplay.