Ben Affleck Casts Chris Messina to Play His Friend (Just Like You’ve Always Wanted to Do)

Photo: Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images

Great dancer Chris Messina is in negotiations to star opposite Ben Affleck in Live by Night, a Prohibition-era crime drama written and directed by the future Batting Gentleman. Messina will play Affleck’s best friend Dion Bartolo, which you could totally see. (Can’t you imagine Messina and Affleck roughhousing – Messina under Affleck’s arm, getting noogied real good?) Based on Dennis Lehane’s novel The Given Day, Live by Night’s cast also includes Elle Fanning, Sienna Miller, and Zoe Saldana. All the actors have been considered for their parts for awhile now, but production was delayed while Affleck was being a movie star/superhero. Of course, Messina previously worked with Affleck on Argo, where he showed the director/actor he could pull off period-specific facial hair.