Colin Firth and Cameron Diaz take a ‘Gambit’ on Coens remake

Newly-crowned Oscar champ Colin Firth (“The King’s Speech”) has signed on to the Coen brothers remake of “Gambit” opposite four-time Golden Globe nominee Cameron Diaz. Shooting of this caper flick directed by Michael Hoffman (“The Last Station”) begins in May.

Firth is to play a London art dealer trying to sell a fake Monet. He enlists the help of Diaz, as a Texas steer roper, to snare a wealthy art collector. She tells a tall tale of her grandfather coming into possession of the painting during WWII.

The original 1966 comedy starred Michael Caine and Shirley MacLaine. He was a Cockney cat burglar and she was a showgirl who set out to rob a priceless antiquity from the world’s richest man.

The film as well as the two leads landed Golden Globes bids. However, “The Russians Are Coming,The Russians Are Coming” won Best Comedy or Musical while its star Alan Arkin took Best Comedy/Musical Actor and Lynn Redgrave (“Georgy Girl”) was named Best Comedy/Musical Actress.

The original film, helmed by Ronald Neame, unrolled in reverse chronological order. A comic twist at the beginning of the story was not revealed until the last moments of the movie. The picture was promoted with the tagline: “Go Ahead Tell The End — It’s Too Hysterical To Keep Secret — But Please Don’t Tell The Beginning!”

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