Dakota Fanning For A Return To ‘Oz’ And A ‘Shutter Island’ Delay In Today’s Dailies — 8/24/09

— Ian McKellen told attendees at an all-night “Lord of the Rings” screening that an actor has been selected to play Bilbo in “The Hobbit.” There are no further details than that, though McKellen also mentioned that he’ll be getting the script “within the next week.” This falls very deeply into the rumor territory for now, though I have little doubt that a script exists or that there’s a Bilbo short list. Especially since “Hobbit” director Guillermo del Toro told us as much in an interview. (TheOneRing.net)

— The word is the “Fight Club” and “Zodiac” director David Fincher is all set to direct the Aaron Sorkin-penned “The Social Network,” also known as “the Facebook movie” in some circles. As you might expect, the story follows the rise of the beast that we call Facebook and its founder, Mark Zuckerberg. Sorkin and Fincher make for odd bedfellows; I’ll definitely see this one. (End of Show, via /Film)

— Gus Van Sant, director of such classics as “Drugstore Cowboy” and “My Own Private Idaho,” is gearing up for his next gig: “Restless,” from a script by newcomer Jason Lew. All we know of the plot is that it is “a contemporary and distinctive take on young love.” (The Hollywood Reporter)

— Lexi Alexander, director of “Punisher: War Zone,” will explore her softer side when she directs “Lifted.” Uriah Shelton stars as an adolescent singer who aspires to compete in a teen singing competition. Those dreams suffer a blow when the boy’s father, a Marine, ships out for Afghanistan. I think it’s a safe bet that, unlike “Punisher,” there will be no scenes of faces being punctured by chairs in “Lifted.” (The Hollywood Reporter)

— Zach Galifianiakis is a hot ticket these days, and he’s playing it right. The “Hangover” star just signed up to star alongside Steve Carell, Paul Rudd and Lucy Punch in the Jay Roach-directed comedy “Dinner for Schmucks.” I can’t really make sense of the plt description, which describes “Schmucks” as a “comedy about the most pathetic guy ever to be invited to another man’s weekly dinner party.” Is it about this most pathetic guy ever? The one time he’s invited to the weekly dinner party? Multiple times? It’s very unclear. But I suspect it will be very funny. (The Hollywood Reporter)

— The 70th anniversary of “The Wizard of Oz” is here, and now there’s word that a sequel is coming. A real, actual sequel, possibly star Dakota Fanning as Dorothy’s granddaughter. Todd McFarlane, who will produce with Basil Iwanyk, compares the sequel’s young Dorothy-type to “Alien” protagonist Ripley. I think that something a little bit worse than a flying monkey will be waiting in Oz on this trip. (Daily Express)

— Here’s your suckage for the day, though its actually been news since Friday. Martin Scorsese’s “Shutter Island,” follow-up to his Oscar-winning “The Departed,” has officially been bumped from its October 2 release date to February 19, 2010. Not only does that put “Shutter,” an adaptation of the great Dennis Lehane book, out of Oscar contention, it also means we can look forward to a sad, Scorsese-less October. Paramount cites the change as a “simple business decision,” based primarily on the current financial climate. (Variety)