April 6, 2021 | 6:49pm ET
The cast for Martin Scorsese’s upcoming film Killers of the Flower Moon is adding even more star power. First it was reported that Robert De Niro and Leonardo DiCaprio would star in the new thriller, and then news broke that Jesse Plemons would take on the lead role. Now, it looks like country rockers Jason Isbell and Sturgill Simpson are the latest to be cast in what’s shaping up to be a truly star-studded affair.
Based on David Grann’s 2017 nonfiction book of the same name, Killers of the Flower Moon follows FBI agent Tom White (Plemons) as he tries to solve the serial murders of members of the Osage Nation over oil rights. A prominent local cattleman named William Hale (De Niro) and his cousin Ernest Burkhart (DiCaprio) were among those implicated in the murders.
According to Deadline, Isbell will make his feature film debut as Bill Smith, an adversary of Burkhart, while Simpson portrays the infamous rodeo champion and bootlegger Henry Grammer. Perhaps their rural musician charm will bring an added bonus of authenticity to the feature, which is set in 1920s Oklahoma.
In addition to the Grammy-winning musicians, Killers of the Flower Moon stars William Belleau (The Twilight Saga: Eclipse), Lily Gladstone (Billions), and Louis Cancelmi (The Irishman). Eric Roth wrote the script, and Apple is picking up the tab on the reported $150 million budget. As is the case with most every Scorsese movie, it will no doubt be worth it.
It’s hard to imagine Isbell and Sturgill fitting a film shoot into their schedules considering how busy they’ve been lately. When he’s not taking care of his mental health and playing benefit concerts, Isbell has been donating his songwriting royalties from his Morgan Wallen hit and singing pro-choice anthems endorsed by Cyndi Lauper and Sheryl Crow. As for Sturgill, he’s spent the past few months recording bluegrass albums, collaborating with Margo Price, and penning a graphic novel prequel to 2019’s Sound & Fury.