March 13, 2009

Stars line up for ‘Airbender’ roles

Aasif Mandvi, Shaun Toub and Cliff Curtis have joined the cast of M. Night Shyamalan's The Last Airbender, Hollywood's Paramount Pictures said.

They join a cast headed by Noah Ringer, who plays the title role; Nicola Peltz, who plays the Waterbender Katara; Jackson Rathbone, in the role of Katara's brother Sokka; and Dev Patel, who plays Prince Zuko, prince of the Fire Nation.

Mandvi, a regular correspondent on The Daily Show, is set to play the role of Commander Zhao, an ambitious and hot-tempered Fire Nation commander, the studio said. Toub, last seen in Iron Man and The Kite Runner, is to play Uncle Iroh, the retired Fire Nation general and Zuko's devoted surrogate parent. Crossing Over cast member Curtis is set to play the ruthless ruler Fire Lord Ozai.

The Paramount and Nickelodeon Movies production, which Shyamalan, Sam Mercer and Frank Marshall are producing, is set to begin principal photography this month.

The live-action film is based on a popular Nickelodeon animated TV series.