Ben Kingsley is set to join the cast of Sacha Baron Cohen's The Dictator, marking the second time the two have starred together. They both recently wrapped Hugo Cabret for Martin Scorcese. Paramount made no comment on the casting. The film will be directed by Larry Charles (Borat, Bruno) based on the script by Alec Berg, Jeff Schaffer, and David Mandel.
The film tells the heroic story of a dictator who risked his life to ensure that democracy would never come to the country he so lovingly oppressed. It is inspired by the best selling novel Zabibah and The King by Saddam Hussein. The film includes the parallel stories of a goat herder and deposed foreign dictator who gets lost in this country. Cohen will play both characters.
Kingsley will play one of the Middle Eastern characters who factor into the plot. Jason Mantzoukas (The League) is in negotiations to play the other part. Yesterday we reported that Anna Faris, Kristen Wiig and Gillian Jacobs (Community) are up for the role of supermarket worker. No casting decision has been made at this time. Filming begins this May on location in New York and Morocco. The Dictator will be released on May 11th, 2012.
I think that Kingsley is a great actor and is a good addition to the cast. I loved him in Shutter Island and Sneakers. What are your thoughts about this casting?