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Industry Roundup: Krasinski Joins Barrymore's Whales, Heigl's Money Gets Green Light

Whale Of A Tale: Universal Pictures has given the green light to Whales and added John Krasinski to star alongside Drew Barrymore in the film about the 1988 rescue of a trio of California gray whales that got trapped under the Arctic Circle ice. Barrymore will play a Greenpeace activist in the Ken Kwapis-directed film, which is based on a true story. Krasinski will take on the role of a small town newspaper reporter who gives lots of knowing winks and smirks to the camera. [Deadline]

She's The One: Lionsgate has acquired the distribution rights to the Katherine Heigl crime-thriller One for the Money, based on the first of Janet Evanovich’s best-selling Stephanie Plum novels. At the age of 30, Plum is divorced and jobless, so she takes a job in the bail bond business; in her first case, she has to investigate a local cop wanted of murder who... is the same guy who broke her heart in high school. Of course he is. [Variety]

Agron Four The Win: Dianna Agron (Glee’s Quinn) has won the female romantic lead in I Am Number Four, the DreamWorks adaptation of an upcoming young adult sci-fi book by James Frey (!) and Jobie Hughes. The film follows a group of nine aliens who have escaped their home planet right before it was annihilated and must hide out on earth disguised as humans. Agron will play a girl dating a high school jock... who falls for one of the aliens, the titular Number Four (Alex Pettyfer). Yo Four, if she tells you she's pregnant and the baby's yours, do not take her at face value! [Heat Vision/HR]

Trio Takes Tower: Ron Howard, Brian Grazer and Akiva Goldsman are joining forces to bring Stephen King’s The Dark Tower book series to both the big and small screens. J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot production company originally had the rights to Tower but returned them to King; now, the high-powered trio are looking to adapt the books into a movie (to be directed by Howard and written by Goldsman) which would then lead into a TV series. When Abrams had the rights, the idea was that it would present a new television project for Lost executive producers Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse to work on once Lost goes off the air, but they “realized they wouldn't be able to do an adaptation justice, and they gave the rights back to King.” If the guys who made arguably the most ambitious show of the past decade feel that way, these Tower books must be insane. [Heat Vision/HR]

Good To Be King: Michael Patrick King, writer/producer/director of Sex and The City, will be returning to television. Warner Bros. Television is finalizing a deal with King under which he would launch his own TV production company, focusing on cultivating new writers and overseeing new projects. The deal would start after Sex and The City 2 is released this summer. If his new television ventures are anything like his most recent one, the vastly underrated 2005 HBO comedy series The Comeback, we say: “Note to self: we want to see this!” [Deadline]

Rock On The Run: Dwayne Johnson (a.k.a. The Rock) will star in the action thriller Protection, which follows a Mexico City security operative who has to “smuggle the daughter of a high-ranking judge across the border” as he is chased by “corrupt cops, drug lords and white collar U.S. criminal forces.” The film, directed by Simon West (When a Stranger Calls), will be shot in New Mexico, thankfully, as his job would be way harder if he had to deal with getting her into Arizona. [HR]

James Goes Boom: Kevin James will star in Sony’s Here Comes the Boom, an action-comedy that will also star Adam Sandler. This will be James’ third upcoming film with the studio, as he will be starring in this summer’s Grown Ups and next summer’s The Zookeeper. Salma Hayek is in talks for the female lead in the film, which undoubtedly would be one of those classic "there is no way you would even be making eye contact with Kevin James if this was real life" love interest roles. [Variety]

High Time: The National will be touring in support of their album High Violet this summer, beginning May 5 through to the end of August. Don't fret, non-U.S. fans, the tour won't be strictly national - they’ll be hopping over to Europe for a number of dates. [Pitchfork]

Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images