Studiocanal is fully financing "The Gunman," which will be produced by Joel Silver, Andrew Rona and Steve Richards of Silver Pictures. Pete Travis wrote the script, which is based on the novel by Jean-Patrick Manchette.
In a rare action movie role, Penn stars as a professional killer who attempts to leave his job behind for the woman (Trinca) he loves, but finds it's harder than expected.
Bardem will play Trinca's husband, who married her to spite the protagonist, while Elba is near a deal to play a dangerous operative who will stop at nothing to get his way.
There is no studio onboard, though Silver Pictures has a distribution deal with Universal.
Elba, who next stars in Guillermo del Toro's "Pacific Rim," will soon be seen in "Thor: The Dark World" and "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom." He recently signed on to produce Michael Caton-Jones' drama "One Square Mile."
Trinca made a splash at Cannes with her performance in Valeria Golino's "Miele." She also appeared in the 2003 Miramax release "The Best of Youth." While she's repped overseas by Paris-based Zelig and Tavistock Wood Management, Trinca does not have U.S. representation yet, though that should quickly change.
The Hollywood Reporter broke the news of Elba's casting.