Robert Downey Jr. Close To Starring In Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice

Nearly a week ago it was announced that billionaire heiress Megan Ellison would be financing the mooted Thomas Pynchon adaptation Inherent Vice from Paul Thomas Anderson as well as his limboed original screenplay The Master, a quasi-Scientology parable starring Philip Seymour Hoffman. Inherent Vice is the one appearing to move forward quickest and Robert Downey Jr. is apparently very close to striking a deal to star in the film as the lead Doc Sportello.

When this project was initially announced, Downey Jr.’s name was mentioned in relation to the project but his increasingly busy production schedule limited him from choosing new projects. Now he’s dropped out from both Alfonso Cuaron’s Gravity and Sam Raimi’s Oz, The Great and Powerful, and finished prinicipal photography on Sherlock Holmes: The Game of Shadows, The Hollywood Reporter say he is able to move in on the role. Although both Anderson’s and Downey Jr’s reps refused to comment.

For those who haven’t read the novel, a plot synopsis is below:

Doc Sportello, a private detective who discovers a kidnapping plot of a billionaire which is brought to his attention by his ex-girlfriend. It is set in 60s LA and has a drug fuelled haze and political awareness that places it somewhere between The Big Lebowski and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.