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Steve Carrell replaces Bill Murray in the new Wes Anderson film 'Asteroid City'

Bill Murray has stepped away from the upcoming Wes Anderson production Asteroid City. He will be replaced by Steve Carrell, who most recently starred in the latest film in the Despicable Me franchise, Minions: the Rise of Gru.

Murray departed the production when he tested positive for Covid-19. The film was recently acquired by Focus Features, but when the studio released the cast list for the movie, which currently includes Anderson favourites Jason Schwartzman, Tilda Swinton, Edward Norton, and Willem Dafoe, Murray’s name was absent.

Considering how Murray was the first person to confirm the film’s title, his recent turn is not going unnoticed. Murray has appeared in most of Anderson’s works, including Rushmore, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, The Grand Budapest Hotel, and most recently, The French Dispatch.

Murray’s non-involvement in the film has been in place ever since the actor first confirmed his Covid diagnosis last September. Murray is believed not to have shot any scenes for the film before dropping out. The announcement was likely held until Murray’s role could be recast.

Other actors set to appear in Asteroid City include Tom Hanks, Rita Wilson, Margot Robbie, Bryan Cranston, Scarlet Johansson, Jeffrey Wright, Maya Hawke, Liev Schreiber, and Adrian Brody, among others.

Co-written by Anderson and Roman Coppola, Asteroid City‘s only synopsis so far is that the film contains a “poetic meditation on the meaning of life.” The movie is set in the American desert around the mid-1950s, specifically revolving around a Junior Stargazer convention. The film centres around students and parents who are taking residence in the town.

The film has yet to settle on an official release date.

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