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James Franco starring in Iceman with Benicio del Toro

james franco

James Franco’s having a very busy year, what with 127 Hours, Howl, Your Highness and Rise Of The Apes all in or heading to cinemas in 2011 - not to mention hosting the Oscars.

But the 32-year-old busy bee is still looking for more things to add to his schedule, and has signed on to co-star with Michael Shannon and Benicio del Toro in The Iceman: The True Story Of A Cold-Blooded Killer.

An adaptation of the book by Anthony Bruno, it follows the (yes, true) story of mob contract killer Richard Kuklinski, his employer Roy Demeo and his mentor assassin.

Shannon will play Kuklinski, with del Toro as Demeo, and Franco a mentor assassin.

“I am honoured to work with such a talented cast on such a compelling story,” says director Ariel Vromen.

“Since the early stages of development I had the dream of casting Michael Shannon as Kuklinski, as I believe there’s no one else that can play this part better than him.”

Could this be a mobster flick to rival even those by Martin Scorsese? With a cast like that, it's looking pretty likely.