In one of his increasingly more frequent non-total-creep roles, John Hawkes has signed on to star alongside Yasiin Bey (whom you’re not supposed to call Mos Def anymore, like we went over) in an adaptation of Elmore Leonard’s 1978 novel The Switch, the Rum Punch predecessor that first introduced the characters later seen in Quentin Tarantino’s Jackie Brown. Set 15 years before the events of that book and film, the newly retitled Switch—so as to avoid confusion with comedies where Jason Bateman sneaks his sperm into Jennifer Aniston—is being pitched as a sort-of Jackie Brown prequel, with Bey and Hawkes playing younger versions of Samuel L. Jackson’s silver-tongued Ordell Robbie and Robert De Niro’s short-tempered Louis Gara, and taking advantage of those actors’ respective gifts for gab and growing a sleazy mustache. Leonard himself will act as producer, having given his blessing to a spec script from writer-director Dan Schechter that Schechter wrote as a gamble without asking for any permission, which suggests it must be pretty good. Hopefully it's also good enough to wrest the title away from that movie where Ellen Barkin is a man, because on that tangential note, there really are too many movies with "switch" and switch variances in their name. Heed our warning, children, as we must begin conserving immediately for the body-swapping comedies of the future.
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