Will Ferrell

Glenn Weiner/ZUMAPress.com

Will Ferrell is used to getting sidesplitting laughs. Now he'll be splitting personalities.

The Semi-Pro star has signed on to star in Two Face, a high-concept comedy-drama for Sony Pictures Entertainment, per Variety.

Ferrell plays a fervent racist who inadvertantly develops a more liberal personality after falling victim to a prank.

Vince Gilligan (The X-Files, Hancock) penned the screenplay, which the 41-year-old comic actor had been eyeing as a potential starring vehicle for the last three years.

Ferrell hits theaters next week in the comedy Step Brothers, which reunites him with his Talladega Nights costar John C. Reilly. He recently wrapped shooting on a big-screen version of Sid and Marty Krofft's classic Saturday morning series Land of the Lost.

Next up, Ferrell will reteam with another Talladega Nights pal, Sacha Baron Cohen, playing Dr. Watson to the latter's Sherlock Holmes in Columbia's comedy send-up of the classic detective duo produced by Judd Apatow.

In other casting news, Jeff Bridges, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Robert Duvall are singing the blues in Crazy Heart, a music-themed drama about a down-on-his-luck, alcoholic country crooner (Bridges) whose budding relationship with a female reporter (Gyllenhaal) helps him get his life together and revive his ailing career.

Legendary songwriter-producer T-Bone Burnett will compose original tunes for the film and soundtrack to be performed by Bridges, an accomplished pianist (see The Fabulous Baker Boys).

The 58-year-old Oscar nominee most recently played the villain in Iron Man and next appears in the comedy How to Lose Friends and Alienate People. Gyllenhaal costars as Batman's love interest, Rachel Dawes, in The Dark Night, unspooling today.

No word on Duvall's role, but the actor-director will produce the film through his production company, Butchers Run Films.

Filming gets under way next month in Santa Fe, N.M.

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