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Kevin Hart Closes Deal for ‘Borderlands’ Movie

The Hollywood Reporter logo The Hollywood Reporter 1/26/2021 Aaron Couch

After playing a video game avatar in two Jumanji movies, Kevin Hart has officially signed on for another type of gaming adventure, with the actor closing his deal to star in Lionsgate’s adaptation of Borderlands.

Hart will play the skilled soldier Roland in what will be a more serious acting turn for the star, who is known worldwide for his comedy chops. He had been in negotiations for months, and those talks first became public in December when The Illuminerdi reported them.

Eli Roth is directing the Borderlands movie, which also has Cate Blanchett set to star as legendary thief Lilith. Emmy-winning Chernobyl creator Craig Mazin penned the script.

“I’m thrilled to be working with Kevin,” said Roth 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.”

Added Nathan Kahane, president of the Lionsgate Motion Picture Group: “Kevin has been behind some of the world’s biggest blockbusters, and our source material is inspired by one of the world’s best-selling video games. We love the way our filmmaking team has adapted this story and we couldn’t be in better creative hands.”

The Borderlands video game launched in 2009 to acclaim, with Gearbox Software and publisher 2K debuting Borderlands 3 in September 2019. The series has sold more than 66 million units.

Avi Arad and Ari Arad are producing Borderlands via their Arad Productions banner. Erik Feig is producing through Picturestart. The executive producers are Randy Pitchford, executive producer of the Borderlands video game franchise and founder of the Gearbox Entertainment Company, and Strauss Zelnick, chairman and CEO of Take-Two Interactive.

Hart last appeared on the big screen in 2019’s Jumanji: The Next Level, and has a number of projects in the pipeline, including the action-comedy Man From Toronto, which he has wrapped opposite Woody Harrelson and Kaley Cuoco. He has also wrapped on Fatherhood, which follows a man whose wife dies shortly after childbirth. In November, Hart and Netflix launched his latest comedy special, No F**s Given, and earlier this month, he inked a rich film and first-look deal with the streaming service.

Hart is repped by UTA.

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