Shorts finishes casting and shooting begins with Robert Rodriguez

Casting is complete on the family comedy adventure Shorts, being directed by Robert Rodriguez (the Spy Kids trilogy) from his own screenplay. Rodriguez is also producing the film with Elizabeth Avellan under their Troublemaker Studios banner. Dan Lin, Hunt Lowry and Stacy Cohen are serving as executive producers on the film, which is being filmed entirely on location in Austin, Texas. Shorts is a presentation of Warner Bros. Pictures, in association with Abu Dhabi Media Company and Media Rights Capital.

The multi-generational ensemble cast includes two-time Emmy nominee Jon Cryer (TV’s Two and a Half Men), Oscar nominee William H. Macy (Fargo), Leslie Mann (Knocked Up), and three-time Emmy winner James Spader (TV’s Boston Legal), as well as young stars Jimmy Bennett (upcoming Star Trek), Kat Dennings (The 40-Year-Old Virgin), Trevor Gagnon (TV’s The New Adventures of Old Christine), Leo Howard (upcoming G.I. Joe), Devon Gearhart (upcoming Changeling), Rebel Rodriguez (Planet Terror), and Jake Short and Jolie Vanier making their feature film debuts.

Shorts is set in the suburb of Black Falls, where all the houses look the same and everyone works for BLACK BOX Unlimited Worldwide Industries Incorporated, whose Mr. Black’s BLACK BOX is the ultimate communication and do-it-all gadget that’s sweeping the nation. Other than keeping his parents employed, however, Mr. Black’s BLACK BOX has done nothing for 11-year-old Toe Thompson (Jimmy Bennett), who just wants to make a few friends…until a mysterious rainbow-colored rock falls from the sky, hits him in the head and changes everything. The Rainbow Rock does Mr. Black’s BLACK BOX one better: it grants wishes to anyone who holds it.

The Rainbow Rock ricochets through the neighborhood, wreaking havoc in the lives of the other underage misfits in the town – including mischievous brothers Loogie (Trevor Gagnon), Lug (Rebel Rodriguez) and Laser (Leo Howard); germophobic genius Nose Noseworthy (Jake Short); and bullying siblings Helvetica (Jolie Vanier) and Cole (Devon Gearhart) Black, who rule their school the way their father, Mr. Black (James Spader), rules the town.

Before long, wishes-gone-wrong have left the neighborhood swarming with tiny spaceships, crocodile armies, giant boogers…and outrageous magical mayhem around every corner.

But it’s not until the grown-ups get their hands on the Rock that the trouble really starts. Now Toe and his newfound friends must join forces to save their town from itself, discovering along the way that what you wish for is not always what you want.

William H. Macy plays Nose Noseworthy’s father, Dr. Noseworthy; Jon Cryer and Leslie Mann play Dad and Mom Thompson, and Kat Dennings plays Toe’s older sister, Stacey.

As he often does, Robert Rodriguez is serving as his own director of photography, editor and visual effects supervisor. Rodriguez and Avellan have also reunited a number of their collaborators from their past films, including makeup department head Ermahn Ospina, production designer Steve Joyner, costume designer Nina Proctor, and first assistant director Brian Bettwy.