John Singleton is venturing out to the urban Latino genre by producing the drama Illegal Tender. Variety reports that Franc Reyes has been slated to write and direct the film. The project has sparked the interest of several domestic distributors.
Reyes' script tracks a young Latino man on the run with his mother from thugs who killed his father. Reyes wrote and directed the film Empire which was made for an estimated $3.5 million and grossed $17.5 million.
The film's budget is approximately $3 million and is scheduled to start shooting May 9 on location in Puerto Rico and New York. Reyes is currently in Puerto Rico location scouting and hiring local crew.
Casting talks are under way with top reggaeton artist Tego Calderon, Rick Gonzalez, Wanda De Jesus and Zoe Saldana. Although Reggaeton music is not a focus of the movie, the music genre will dominate the soundtrack.