Sacha Baron Cohen gets serious for Django Unchained
Sacha Baron Cohen has joined Quentin Tarantino's highly anticipated drama, Django Unchained. The Golden Globe-winner was specifically picked by the director to play a key character in the film.
Sacha Baron Cohen is taking his career to the next level. The actor who's known for playing comedic characters such as Borat, Bruno and Ali G, is taking a serious turn. Cohen is in talks to join the cast of Quentin Tarantino's upcoming drama Django Unchained.
Django Unchained already has a massive cast led by Leonardo DiCaprio and Oscar-winner Jamie Foxx. The film takes place in the U.S.'s South during the 1800s, when slavery was a common economic practice. DiCaprio plays a corrupt and callous plantation owner named Calvin Candie, and Foxx portrays slave-turned-bounty hunter Django.
Cohen joins the cast as Scotty, a small but significant character in the story. Scotty is an awkward gambler who buys Django's wife (Kerry Washington) as a female companion. According to Variety, Tarantino was very particular about who was cast in the role. The character is supposed to be one of the few "good guys" that appears in the racially-fueled drama.
Other notable actors signed on to Django Unchained include Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Kurt Russell, Don Johnson, Wu-Tang Clan founder RZA and Anthony LaPaglia. Levitt was originally rumored to play the role of Scotty, but it was later revealed that he and Lapaglia would play a pair of Australian brothers. The film is scheduled to start production later this month.
Next up, Sacha Baron Cohen can be seen in Martin Scorsese's family film Hugo. He plays a station inspector, who gets mixed up in the fantastical adventures of a young boy called Hugo Cabret (Asa Butterfield).
Hugo debuts Nov. 23, 2011, while Django Unchained is slated to open in theaters Dec. 25, 2012.
Photo credit: Nikki Nelson/ WENN