Elizabeth Banks, Kirsten Dunst, Blake Lively & More Testing For 'The Silver Linings Playbook'

Rooney Mara, Rachel McAdams, Andrea Riseborough, Olivia Wilde & Possibly Jennifer Lawrence All In The Mix

So what happens when your last film earns seven Oscar nominations and two wins for Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress? You get your pick of the lot when it comes to rounding up the cast for your next film.

That’s the enviable position David O. Russell now finds himself in as he looks to finding the leading lady for his “The Fighter” follow up “The Silver Linings Playbook,” which already has Mark Wahlberg notched for the lead role. The plot involves Pat Peoples (Wahlberg), a former high school teacher who, after being released from a four-year stint in a mental institution, moves back in with his mother; he then seeks to remake himself, finding the silver linings in his life. Risky Business reveals that the big role up for grabs is that of a depressed woman, who after the death of her husband, goes on wild sexual spree, loses her job and eventually becomes friends with and a love interest for Pat. So who is looking to land the gig? Pretty much every sought after actress in Hollywood including Elizabeth Banks, Kirsten Dunst, Blake Lively, Rooney Mara, Rachel McAdams, Andrea Riseborough, Olivia Wilde and Jennifer Lawrence (though scheduling is probably a major issue).

We’re not going to go down the pros/cons/what ifs of each choice because, well, that would take far too long. But a couple of things to note: Elizabeth Banks was cast in Russell’s “The H-Man Cometh” way back in the day before it fell apart, so he’s already well aware of her talent. And for whatever it’s worth, Russell has been talking up Blake Lively and her “magic” lately. So if we had to pick two “front-runners” those would be it, followed closely by Rooney Mara, who is obviously one of the big young names these days (though maybe too young) and Kirsten Dunst who has been earning rave reviews for her turn in Lars Von Trier‘s “Melancholia.”

Testing will apparently take place the rest of this week and over the weekend and if all the pieces come together, shooting will start in August, by which time Russell will have attached himself to another half dozen projects.