EXCLUSIVE: Ice Cube is in the midst of making deals to star in a pair of movies. He has just closed with Focus Features to join the cast of the Working Title-produced film Covers, directed by Late Night helmer Nisha Ganatra. Production is just getting underway and he is starring alongside Tracee Ellis Ross and Dakota Johnson. The Flora Greeson-scripted comedy is set among the talent, fame and fast-paced world of Hollywood’s music scene. Tim Bevan & Eric Fellner are producing.
Cube is separately negotiating to team with Dave Bautista in The Killer’s Game, the Simon Kinberg & Rand Ravich-scripted adaptation of the Jay Bonansinga novel that DJ Caruso will direct in October for STX and Endurance. In that film, Bautista (opening soon in Stuber and My Spy) plays an elite hitman named Joe Flood who learns he will die of a terminal disease. A devout Catholic, he won’t kill himself, and instead takes out a contract on himself and makes sure the woman he has fallen in love with is financially set. When Flood gets word he was misdiagnosed and is fine, his new mission is to protect his lover, and try to call off the hit even though several assassins are now vying for the bounty, with Cube playing the best of those assassins. Andrew Lazar is producing with Endurance’s Steve Richards, Scott Lambert and Kia Jam.
The project has been one long coveted by directors, with John Woo and Wolfgang Petersen making attempts when their stars soared at a project developed at Paramount and New Line. It ended up at Intermedia and got jammed up for a decade when that company went bankrupt. That came before this current manifestation came together, with Jason Statham at one time attached. Bautista and Cube seem a mano a mano pairing with promise.
Cube is repped by WME, Prospect Park, Geragos & Geragos and Ziffren Brittenham.