Rooney Mara and Martin Sheen have been cast in the thriller Trash.

The Girl with the Tattoo star and The West Wing veteran will take on roles in Stephen Daldry and Working Title's adaptation of Andy Mulligan's children's novel set on the rubbish dumps of the Third World.

Trash chronicles the adventures of three boys who find themselves on the run from the authorities when they discover something mysterious in the city dump.

Mara will star as an NGO worker while Sheen will play the character Father Julliard.

Newcomers Rickson Tevez, Eduardo Luis and Gabriel Weinstein will portray the three boys.

Production on Trash is scheduled to begin in August in Rio de Janerio, with a slated 2014 release.

Sheen has just wrapped filming on The Amazing Spider-Man 2 while Mara is finishing up on an untitled Terrence Malick feature.