John Goodman, Christina Ricci and Susan Sarandonhave joined the cast of Larry and Andy Wachowski's action film SpeedRacer which will commence principal photography at the BabelsbergStudios outside of Berlin from June.
The German-English co-production between Sechste Babelsberg Filmand London-based Velocity Productions - which is based on the animated1960s cult series of the same name - had already cast Emile Hirsch inthe role of the racer Speed; Goodman and Sarandon will play hisparents, and Riccias the love interest, and Matthew Fox as Speed'smysterious rival X.
This is second time that the Wachowski brothers have worked inBabelsberg after their production of V For Vendetta was shot there inspring 2005 by James McTeigue with Hugo Weaving andNatalie Portman.
Speed Racer has also become the first project to be granted a higheramount of production incentive from the German Federal Film Fund (DFFF)over and above the prescribed cap of Euros 4m.
A decision by the DFFF advisory committee, including producerMartin Hagemann (Zero Fiction Film), Georgia Tornow (film20)and KlausSchaefer (FFF Bayern), agreed to grant Speed Racer funding of Euros 9m.
Commenting on the DFFF decision, Henning Molfenter, the film'sco-producer and managing director of Studio Babelsberg Motion Pictures,said: 'A wonderful signal. Apart from the turnover and the economiceffects for Germany the knowhow transfer in the area of newtechnologies is extraordinarily large. The German film industry and thefilmmakers will profit to a high degree.'