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Mark Wahlberg Talks Casting Justin Bieber for Upcoming Basketball Film

Justin Bieber, Mark Wahlberg
Jason Merritt / Frazer Harrison, Getty Images

Forget the fact that he’s the biggest worldwide teen icon ever, Mark Wahlberg said he just had a feeling that 17-year-old Justin Bieber would be the best fit for a role in his upcoming basketball film. Call it instinct.

“Intuition. I’m pretty intuitive,” Wahlberg told MTV News of why the Biebs was his ideal ‘actor’ for the part. “I see the guy and spent time with him, and you see what he does and how he does it, and then you actually have a conversation with him, and it’s there.”

Wahlberg first announced his plans to include Bieber in the street basketball drama back in April, and it seems that the blueprints are slowly, but surely, taking shape. Of course, for Wahlberg, that means coming to terms with the fact that he’s no longer on the list of Hollywoods hot young stars.

“So I get this call from Paramount [with a story about] an old guy and a young guy. I’m like, ‘Cool, let’s get Jack [Nicholson]. Let’s get Robert De Niro. Let’s get Robert Duvall.’ And they go, ‘What about Garrett Hedlund?’ I’m like, ‘For what?’” the actor recalled. “They’re like, ‘For the young guy.’”

Old guy or not, Wahlberg knew the Biebs — what with his inborn basketball skills and all — would be a perfect fit for the young guy spot. The ‘Four Brothers’ actor is indeed placing all of his eggs in one basket by betting on the ‘Baby’ singer’s acting skills, but if things don’t work out, he’s got a backup plan. Of Biebs, he says, “It’s there — and if not, I will extract it.”

The title and release date of the flick are still TBA, but we have a feeling they’ll start shooting sometime in 2012 — call it intuition.

Watch Mark Wahlberg Talk About Casting Justin Bieber

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