True Blood, Ryan Kwanten

Jeff Riedel / HBO

UPDATE: According to sources tied closely to the project, Brad Anderson will not be directing the movie—as has been reported. Scott Kosar, who wrote the script, will be getting behind the camera. Brad and Scott worked on The Machinist together, hence the confusion.

Holy Helter Skelter!

Good thing True Blood's Ryan Kwanten has clocked in all those hours around dead folks down in Bon Temps, 'cause he's going to need the experience. R.K. just nabbed his first post-vampire big screen role (that is, unless you count Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole—which we don't).

And the part is to die for, literally:

Ry is set to play infamous serial killer and cult leader Charles Manson in the flick The Family.

Yep, you read that right: No buff superhero stuff or mushy rom-com roles for Ryan. Instead he's skipping straight to the psychological dramas. And playing a guy that audiences won't sympathize with in the least, no less? That take guts.

Kudos to the Aussie hottie—we knew we loved him for a reason.

Brad Anderson is set to direct the pic, which means R.K. is going to have to get way into the role. You might not know Brad's name but you definitely know his work: he directed The Machinist, the film which Batman—uh, we mean Christian Bale—went totally emaciated for.

Looks like Ryan is in for some serious work (and possibly a complete make-under?). So unlike Alexander Skarsgård, who's living the posh and pampered life in his crisp navy suit, romping over in Hawaii with Rihanna.

But then again, Ry has always been more into the acting stuff, while A.Skars loves his tabloid attention. Think about it: When's the last time you heard about Ryan hooking up with a T-town hottie in an after-hours club?

Uh, never!

Gotta say, we're intrigued.

You may have been distracted by his amazing abs on True Blood, but the guy has some serious acting chops—and we think he's definitely got what it takes to play the cuckoo cultish charm of one of history's most notorious killers.

But what do you think? Or are you still wondering exactly how shirtless Charles Manson will get?

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