A Team advance team in town

Got a tough mission that no one else can handle, not even the military?

Save it for the A-Team.

Twentieth Century Fox's movie remake of the 1980s TV serial will be partially filmed in the region, TNRD film commissioner Vicci Weller confirmed Friday.

Location scouting earlier in the week by director Joe Carnahan proved fruitful.

"It is confirmed," Weller said of the production, worth an estimated $80 million. "The art department has already arrived. They're already prepping and getting ready."

The extended preparation is a bonus for Kamloops since it will likely mean greater economic spinoff benefits. Production shooting in the region will outlast that which took place last summer for the blockbuster movie 2012, still to be released.

Most of the location shooting for the film will take place for two weeks in September. Weller was unsure whether the lead actors - Liam Neeson plays Hannibal, the role played by George Peppard in the original series - will be on location then.

Bradley Cooper (The Hangover, TV's Alias) plays Templeton "Face" Peck. In the show, Hannibal and Peck were part of an elite team of mercenaries, on the run from the U.S. government for a crime they did not commit, hired for dangerous missions no one else will tackle.

Speculation has been rife for months over who will be cast to play the role of B.A. Baracus, played by Mr. T in the show. A number of online movie sites indicated that rapper Ice Cube was in talks with the producers but that nothing materialized. Common and The Game (Just Right), both rappers-turned-actors, were also considered candidates.

In the 10 years in which the A-Team project has been under consideration, lead contenders for the main role of Hannibal have included Mel Gibson, George Clooney and Bruce Willis.

Neeson was felt to be a left-field choice but his action-film credentials have been boosted by a starring role in Taken, which grossed $221 million worldwide. He is also slated to play Abraham Lincoln in the 2011 film Lincoln.

Neeson lost his wife, actor Natasha Richardson, as a result of a head injury suffered in a ski accident in Quebec in March.

The A-Team is slated for release in June 2010.

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