Verve Pipe's Brian Vander Ark Cast In "Metal God"

After stretching his acting legs on several indie flicks, Verve Pipe frontman Brian Vander Ark has just been cast in his first big-budget motion picture, and will appear with Mark Wahlberg in "Metal God."

Vander Ark previously had small roles in two Matthew Leutwyler movies, "Road Kill" and "The Space Between Us," and even dyed his hair black for another film, Matthew Bard's "Mergers & Acquisitions."

"Metal God" will recount the real life story of Ripper Owens, who went from singing in a Judas Priest cover band to replacing vocalist Rob Halford in the actual band. Wahlberg will portray Ripper in the movie, which is being directed by Stephen Herek and will start shooting in January 2000 for release in November.

As for the Verve Pipe, the band has spent much of the last few months touring in support of its newest, self-titled record, and will head to Indianapolis on December 31 for a New Year's Eve gig at Monument Circle.