It was said that Penn seemed to be a lock for the role, but when a deal couldn't be made, Waltz stepped in and will be playing a villainous circus animal trainer in this Depression-era love-triangle story that also stars Robert Pattinson and Reese Witherspoon. Pattinson will play a young veterinary student who joins a two-bit circus and falls for the star of the show (Witherspoon), even though she is married to Waltz's character.
Francis Lawrence is directing from a script by Richard LaGravanese, which is adapted from the Sara Gruen novel. It wasn't clear when the film would go before cameras as of yet.
Water for Elephants was released April 22nd, 2011 and stars Reese Witherspoon, Robert Pattinson, Christoph Waltz, Paul Schneider, Jim Norton, Hal Holbrook, Mark Povinelli, Richard Brake. The film is directed by Francis Lawrence.