EXCLUSIVE: Director Clint Eastwood has set Christopher Walken to star in Jersey Boys, the Warner Bros and GK Films feature adaptation of the hit stage musical. Walken will play the role of Angelo “Gyp” DeCarlo, the Jersey mobster who, in the show, served an unofficial consigliere role to the young singers as they tried to build their careers without falling into the grip of organized crime. The film was scripted by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice and production begins mid-September in Los Angeles. Graham King and Rob Lorenz are producing and Frankie Valli and Bob Gaudio are the exec producers. The Tony-winning stage musical has grossed more than $1 billion for all its incarnations. Deadline revealed that Eastwood was not going to cast major stars to play the young singers but rather select them from the various casts taking the stage nightly. Reports are that Eastwood chose Vincent Piazza, John Lloyd Young, Erich Bergen, and Michael Lomenda. Walken will be the first of several stars who’ll add some name recognition to the production.

As for Walken, he’s coming off A Late Quartet and Seven Psychopaths, the latter of which he starred in for Martin McDonagh, who directed Walken to a Tony nomination in A Behanding In Spokane. Walken is repped by ICM Partners.