Hot on heels of Lindsay Lohan's casting news in sexual thriller "The Canyons", the film's producer Braxton Pope opened up about why the filmmakers decided to hire the troubled actress. Speaking to MTV News, Pope praised the "Liz & Dick" star as a "charismatic" person.
"She wants to do it. We want her to do it," said Pope. "I would just say we have not worked out the specifics of her deal yet. Her participation in 'Liz & Dick', I would just say we're very aware of. We told her in the first meeting that we would be in touch with the producer of 'Liz & Dick' to see how that shoot was going to get intel."
Pope explained that he, director Paul Schrader and scribe Bret Easton Ellis are more focused on Lohan's acting skill than her tabloid drama. "What's kind of lost in a lot of the Lindsay discussions is the fact that Lindsay is a very talented actress," he gushed. "She's very charismatic and she has a lot of acting skills."
"So her lifestyle and some of the things that she's gone through have tended to kind of overwhelm the fact, but Lindsay has kind of real talent," he added. "So for this part, we felt that she was really the right actor for a host of different reasons."
Of casting porn star James Deen as Lohan's leading man in the film, Pope said, "I've met with James many times, and I feel like I have a good sense of who and what he is. We mentioned, obviously, James to Lindsay, and that wasn't an issue for her." He noted that "we have not put them together yet", but Deen is eager to work with Lohan.
"He's a very interesting guy... He's entering the mainstream, and this is the biggest step in that direction. So he's definitely excited, and he is preparing very diligently for the role," Pope said. "And he's taken it very seriously. We've been pleased with everything about his approach to the project, for sure. He's always very natural, and the guy was extremely prepared. It was very smooth."
"The Canyons" revolves around "sex and crime among a group of twentysomethings in Los Angeles." Lohan will star as Tara, while Deen will portray Christian. Pope said that Christian is a "trust fund kid, power player and major manipulator, who is a film producer that enjoys his own three-way sex sessions," while Tara is a girl "who sold her pride for the material comforts Christian can provide."
The project, which is expected to begin filming in July, is still looking for three more actors to play Lindsay who is a former yoga instructor who has an affair with Christian, Ryan who is a wannabe actor, and Gina who is Ryan's employee.