Francis Ford Coppola has cast Vincent Gallo as the title character in Tetro, which is set to begin principal photography in Buenos Aires on Mar 31.

Newly anointed Oscar winner Javier Bardem, Maribel Verdu and newcomer Alden Ehrenreich also star in the story of a young Argentinean man searching for his older brother.

The budget is capped at $15m and Tetro is expected to open in 2009.

'Despite the controversy always surrounding him, Vincent Gallo has a real presence on screen and 'an aliveness',' Coppolas said.

'He's intense, intelligent, and very funny I know choosing Vincent Gallo to star in my film will raise a few eyebrows, but I'm betting that seeing him in the role will open some eyes.'