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Matthew Vaughn Eyes Newcomer Taron Egerton for ‘Secret Service’ (EXCLUSIVE)

Egerton is director Matthew Vaughn's choice after lengthy search

After a long search to find a young actor to team up with Colin Firth in his adaptation of “The Secret Service,” helmer Matthew Vaughn (pictured) has tapped newcomer Taron Egerton for the role of the young spy.

While no deal is done, negotiations are expected to start shortly with the young thesp for the role of the nephew who Firth mentors to become a secret agent. Vaughn and 20th Century Fox had also considered Aaron Taylor-Johnson, but decided to look at actors that weren’t as high-profile, and began meeting with actors prior to the Fourth of July holiday.

Variety previously reported that Vaughn met with young actors that included Jack O’Connell, who recently landed the staring role in Angelina Jolie’s “Unbroken,” and “Attack the Block” star John Boyega before the break. The director decided to open the search up even further, which led to him coming across Egerton.

Egerton is so new to the biz, he doesn’t even have an agent, with his only credit to date on the TV show “Inspector Lewis.”

Fox is very high on the project ever since Vaughn took it on as his follow-up to “X-Men: First Class” and fought hard to make sure the film landed at Fox. The studio landed distribution rights in March on the project which Vaughn has already co-written with his writing partner Jane Goldman.

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Marv Films will finance and produce the film, based on the comic series by Mark Millar and David Gibbons. Production is expected to start this fall.

With his two leads now set, Vaughn will now look to cast the female co-star. Sources  say Vaughn is showing interest in Emma Watson and “Dark Shadows” actress Bella Heathcote. Vaughn’s also eying a high-profile star to play the villain. Tom Cruise and Leonardo DiCaprio are among that have been approached, but both actors have already passed.

Production is set to start this fall.

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