Affleck replaces Bale, joins Weisz for Malick film

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A romantic drama directed by Terrence Malick is reshaping its cast with Ben Affleck replacing Christian Bale, to join the previously announced actors Javier Bardem ( Vicky Cristina Barcelona) and Rachel McAdams ( Sherlock Holmes). Rachel Weisz ( The Lovely Bones) is also joining.

The title of the film is unknown and Affleck's affiliation was confirmed, according to entertainment news website The Wrap, when spotted with wife Jennifer Garner on holiday in Oklahoma purchasing fishing gear to research a new role - conceivably the role in this film. Production is slated to begin in October in Oklahoma.

Malick's highly-anticipated The Tree of Life, starring Brad Pitt and Sean Penn and set in the 1950s, will be released in November. Directing regularly again, there was a 20-year gap between his acclaimed Days of Heaven in 1978 with Richard Gere and 1998's The Thin Red Line starring Sean Penn.

Following up Affleck's 2007 directorial debut Gone Baby Gone, his new film, The Town, stars Jeremy Renner, Jon Hamm and himself. It will be world premiered at the Toronto film fest in September.

McAdams co-stars in Morning Glory with Harrison Ford this November and Weisz is currently shooting Jim Sheridan's Dream House with Daniel Craig and Naomi Watts. Bardem can be seen next in Eat Pray Love and Biutiful.