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Chace Crawford looks to become an accused South African murderer and Pierce Brosnan's son

EXCLUSIVE: Chace Crawford has begun to push out in some interesting filmic directions. Known as the hypotenuse of the Serena-Blair love triangle on TV's "Gossip Girl," the 25-year-old played a philosophical drug dealer in Joel Schumacher's "Twelve" last year and recently signed on to star opposite Katie Holmes in a romantic comedy called "Responsible Adults."

Now he looks to take a turn to the political. Crawford is attached to play the role of an accused South African murderer in "The House Gun," an independent-film adaptation of an acclaimed novel from Nobel Prize-winner Nadine Gordimer, according to a person familiar with the production who asked not to be identified because financing details for the film were still being worked out.

Pierce Brosnan is also attached to play Crawford's father, a respected architect who is convinced of his son's innocence, the source said.

Gordimer's 1998 novel focuses on Harald Lingard (Brosnan) and his son, who at the start of the novel is accused of shooting and killing his housemate. The family then hires a black lawyer, in what becomes a story of morality and race in post-apartheid South Africa. The lawyer role has yet to be cast.

The film is being produced by the company behind the screwball family comedy "City Island," which became an art-house hit last year. A principal at the company declined to comment on "House Gun" casting.

Crawford had initially been cast in the lead role Kevin Bacon made famous in the upcoming "Footloose" remake, but left in part because of the rigors of the "Gossip Girl" shooting schedule.

The route from the CW to the big screen is not always a smooth one. But Crawford has some esteemed footsteps to follow: His "Gossip Girl" costar Blake Lively appeared in last fall's Ben Affleck-directed crime drama "The Town" and stars opposite Ryan Reynolds in the upcoming "Green Lantern."

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