Quaid, Tatum Lead Team Joe

Actors Dennis Quaid and Channing Tatum have signed on to lead the cast of Paramount’s live-action feature based on the G.I. Joe toy line and animated series, according to Daily Variety. Quaid will reportedly take on the role of grizzled team leader Hawk, while Tatum plays top soldier Duke Hauser in the Stephen Sommers film, which is sure to offer a heavy dose of visual effects work. Filming is slated to begin next month for an Aug. 7, 2009 release.

Written by Stuart Beattie (30 Days of Night, the Pirates of the Caribbean trilogy), the G.I. Joe movie will take place 10 years in the future, focusing on operatives of the Global Integrated Joint Operating Entity, an elite, international strike force based in Brussels. The ensemble cast also includes Marlon Wayans as Ripcord, Rachel Nichols as hand-to-hand combat and counterintelligence expert Scarlett, Akinnuoye-Agbaje as ordinance expert Heavy Duty, Said Taghmaoui as communications specialist Breaker, Ray Park as mute ninja Snake Eyes and Sienna Miller as a spy known as The Baroness.

Quaid, who has been enjoying a career resurgence in recent years, plays a lead role in Columbia Picutres’ upcoming political thriller, Vantage Point. He will also be seen in the Miramax dramedy Smart People and Universal’s college football movie, The Express.

Tatum, star of the 2006 dance movie Step Up, will next be seen in Stop Loss from Boys Don’t Cry director Kimberly Peirce, and Rogue Pictures’ underground street fighting pic, Fighting. He was recently cast as gangster Pretty Boy Floyd in director Michael Mann’s Public Enemies, a Universal Pictures 2009 release to star Christian Bale and Johnny Depp.

Sommers, who directed the Universal monster movies The Mummy, The Mummy Returns and Van Helsing, is directing and producing G.I. Joe with producing partner Bob Duscay. Fresh from his success with DreamWorks/Paramount’s adaptation of Hasbro’s Transformers brand, Lorenzo di Bonaventura is also producing with Hasbro’s Brian Goldner.