Kevin Hart will join Cate Blanchett in the upcoming Borderlands movie, according to The Hollywood Reporter, which said today that the Jumanji star has signed a deal to portray the highly trained former Atlas soldier Roland. Hart is known primarily for his comedic work in movies like Ride Along, Central Intelligence, and Night School, as well as various comedy specials, but the report says the Roland role “will be a more serious acting turn for the star.”
That’s a little unexpected, given that Borderlands isn’t exactly the most dramatically hefty videogame of all time, but it’s possible that the film will have a darker tone than its source material suggests: The presence of Blanchett, a multiple Academy Award winner, gives it an immediate sense of credibility (or at least visibility) that it might otherwise lack, and it’s being directed by famed goremeister Eli Roth, he of Hostel, Grindhouse, and Cabin Fever fame. If nothing else, it looks like an interesting blend of talents.
“I’m thrilled to be working with Kevin,” Roth said in a statement. “Borderlands is a different kind of role for him, and we are excited to thrill audiences with a side of Kevin they’ve never seen before. He’s going to be an amazing Roland.”
Roland is a soldier class character who appeared in Borderlands, Borderlands 2, Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel, and the Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep DLC. He’s highly skilled with all weapons but has a preference for rifles and shotguns, and can deploy a powerful Scorpio Turret.
Details on the Borderlands film, including when it might actually arrive on screens, are still scant, but it’s expected to begin filming soon in Hungary.