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Adam B. Vary
August 07, 2012 AT 12:00 PM EDT

Reese Witherspoon is on board to produce and star in The Beard, a romantic comedy about a woman who serves as a fake date for a gay man to help him pass as straight. Incredibly, the project marks Witherspoon’s first (pardon the pun) straight-up romantic comedy since 2005’s Just Like Heaven (last spring’s action comedy This Means War doesn’t count). Becca Greene (a writer on MTV’s 2011 animated series Good Vibes) penned the script. [THR]

Julianne Hough (Rock of Ages) is attached to Time and a Half, a romantic dramedy penned by Diablo Cody about a young twentysomething in a dead-end job who comes across an old one night stand who also happens to be her sister’s high school ex-boyfriend. Hough just recently starred in Cody’s untitled directorial debut. Ol Parker (Imagine Me & You) is directing. [Variety]

Jonathan Rhys Meyers has joined The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, an adaptation of the first book in Cassandra Clare YA fantasy series about a young woman (Lily Collins) who learns she’s from a line of warriors called Shadowhunters, who keep the world safe from demons. Rhys Meyers will play the main villain, the ominously named Valentine Morgenstern. Lena Headey, Jared Harris, and Kevin Zegers (Transamerica) costar. Harald Zwart (The Karate Kid) is directing. [THR]

Xavier Samuel (The Twilight Saga: Eclipse) has signed up for Plush, an indie thriller about a rock singer (Sucker Punch‘s Emily Browning) with psychic abilities, and the similarly gifted psychologist (Twilight‘s Cam Gigandet) who tries to help her. Samuel will play a mentally unhinged guitarist who joins the band. Director Catherine Hardwicke (yep, another Twilight alum!) also penned the script with Arty Nelson. [Variety]

Michael Kenneth Williams (HBO’s Boardwalk Empire) is in talks for the upcoming Robocop remake, as the old partner of the Detroit cop (Joel Kinnaman) who gets transformed into the titular crime-fighting cyborg after a near-fatal accident. Jose Padilha (Elite Squad) is directing. [THR]

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