Brad Pitt has joined the cast of Quentin Tarantino's upcoming second world war drama Inglorious Bastards for The Weinstein Company (TWC) and Universal Pictures.

Pitt, who had been in talks with the director for several months, will play Lieutenant Aldo Raine, the leader of a band of convicts sent on a suicide mission. As previously reported, Eli Roth will play the role of Sergeant Donnie Donowitz.

TWC and Universal Pictures are co-financing and co-presenting the feature. TWC will release in North America and Universal will handle overseas distribution through UPI.

Tarantino and producer Lawrence Bender are in Berlin preparing for an October start and will race to finish the film in time for a Cannes 2009 slot.

Harvey and Bob Weinstein are serving as executive producers.