It is confirmed that Ben Foster is set to play the son of John Travolta's John Gotti Sr. in Barry Levinson-directed biopic "Gotti: In the Shadow of My Father". Fiore Films announced the casting on Tuesday, August 2, adding that pre-production of the movie is scheduled to start in September while principal photography will begin on January 3, 2012 in New York City.
The project will reunite Foster with Levinson after they teamed up for 1999's comedy "Liberty Heights". "Barry Levinson was the first director who took a chance on me, and I have a career because of him," the "Alpha Dog" actor said, before adding, "This is a film bout family, fathers and sons. I am deeply honored for the opportunity to work with Barry and the amazing cast he is assembling to help bring the story of the Gotti family to the screen."
Levinson himself, who was chosen to replace Nick Cassavetes as the director last April, described Foster as "one of the few young actors who can literary transform himself from role to role, from light comedy to a deadly gunslinger..." He went on gushing, "I think he can bring something very memorable to the role of Gotti Jr."
The film project has faced some troubles lately. Joe Pesci sued the production company for $3 million, accusing them of using his name to promote and attract investors for the project. The veteran actor claimed that he has gained 30 pounds after he was promised to play Angelo Ruggiero, but later he was only given a less significant role as Anthony "Gaspipe" Casso.
It is also still uncertain whether or not Lindsay Lohan is attached to portray Gotti Jr.'s leading lady. Although exec producer Marc Fiore once said she has locked a role in the film, a producer said that the troubled actress actually has not officially signed on to the project and she's still in talks with the production team.
Based on true event, "Gotti: In the Shadow of My Father" follows John Gotti, a father who lives and dies by the Mob code. His beloved son John Gotti Jr., however, refuses to follow his path in the mafia world and chooses to redeem himself. The film is also starring Al Pacino, Kelly Preston as well as Ella Bleu, and is expected to be released sometime in 2012.