Every time I go to Vegas, I stroke my fiscally responsible ego by watching the blank faces of middle America as they yank slot handles with one hand and suck smoke/cradle their imbibery with the other. Sillies. Don’t they know slots are for kids? The odds favor the blackjack tables. They also favored a bunch of MIT students who worked those very tables between 1979 and 1994. But don’t think Vegas didn’t do anything about it. Security was working full time on their nerd-alert detectors in an effort to identify the smarty-pants and ban the racquet.
Joining the ongoing Vegas tourism promotion consortium, 21, based on Ben Mezrich’s book about smart guys using their intellect to live the good life, Bringing Down the House: The Inside Story of Six MIT Students Who Took Vegas for Millions, is sealing up the casting deals and moving to start shooting in February.
Enter: Laurence Fishburne. His films are hit and miss, but dude can deliver the calm and measured verbal pimpslap like no one else. 11-year-old spelling prodigies? Slap! Tom Cruise? Slap! M.I.T. scoundrels and scallywags taking Vegas for millions? Sa-lap! Fishburne is working his rhetorically charged magic to star as a Vegas security chief. The announcement was followed closely by word of Kate “please, I pray, eat” Bosworth jumping on board as well (to star and produce, no less).
21 will be directed by Robert Luketic, making the jump from frilly silliness like Monster-in-Law and Win a Date with Tad Hamilton to the skylarkin’ of the six MIT guys who took Vegas by the ankles and shook millions in coin right out of their tight pocketses. Kevin Spacey is also starring in 21, coming to you from a little film hut called Columbia.