Sunday, November 4, 2012

The Great (film) Debates vol. 60

Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn about the cast. . . do it again!

Recast Gone with the Wind with current actors.


Panelist: Tennessee Jed

This is a tough one since the original stars so own the visual rights. Scarlett: Mila Kunis, Emma Stone, Eliza Dushku, and Jennifer Lawrence get brought in for a screen test, but Emma Stone is my likely pick. Scarlett with red hair damn it! Rhett Butler: Josh Lucas (Sweet Home Alabama), Henry Cavill (The Immortals, the Tudors), Alex O'Laughlin (Hawaii 5-0) or Anson Mount (Hell on Wheels) could all qualify visually. Melanie Wilkes: Emma Watson, Keira Knightly. Ashley Wilkes: Ryan Phillippe or Barrack Obama. Mammy: Octavia Spear or even better Queen Latifah.

Panelist: ScottDS

I still haven't seen it [dodges thrown object from Bev] so I'll do the best I can. Christian Bale as Rhett Butler, Emmy Rossum as Scarlett O'Hara, Guy Pierce as Ashley Wilkes, and Gemma Arterton as Melanie Hamilton.

Panelist: AndrewPrice

This one is much more difficult than recasting Star Wars, but we can't shirk the hard ones! I'd cast Stephen McHattie (Pontypool) as Rhett Butler. I'd go with James Caviezel as Ashley Wilkes, Rosamund Pike as Melanie, and Mary Winstead as Scarlett O'Hara.

Panelist: BevfromNYC

Aw, you put this one in just for me! But this is a really hard question because there are just no replacements for the original cast. I happen to think that every casting choice made was perfect and there are no modern equivalents to Clark Gable, Vivien Leigh, Hattie McDaniel, Leslie Howard, Butterfly McQueen, Olivia DeHaviland et al. There are just no actors who can measure up. However, if I must ponder the unthinkable, I will give this one a lot more thought and prepare to defend or debate others obviously wrong choices!

Panelist: T-Rav

This may sound weird, but I would kinda like to see Robert Downey Jr. as Rhett Butler. I mean, if he can do a convincing Sherlock Holmes, why not? For Miss Scarlett O'Hara, hmmm. If it was 20 or 30 years ago, I might have gone with Stephanie Zimbalist (yeah, I can do obscure people too), but no one really strikes me as well for it today. Maybe Kate Beckinsale? She has a pretty wide range. I would also like to see Guy Pearce as Ashley. Kind of a British-heavy cast, but if they're going to be playing all our superheroes, oh well.

Comments? Thoughts?

87 comments:

Floyd R. Turbo said...

Rhett: I'm gonna go with Liev Schreiber here based on voice and presence.

Ashley: In a breakout role winning an Oscar -- Alan Tudyk (he can do it dammit!) or Phillip Seymour Hoffman

Scarlett: I'm going with Reese Witherspoon based on her June Carter Cash portrayal

Melanie: Emma Watson

Mammie... Tyler Perry

Prissy: Viola Davis

Tennessee Jed said...

As usual, Bev and I agree :)! Floyd and I both chose Emma Watson as Melanie. Done Deal!! Scott - Love your Emmy Rossum choice visually, although she doesn't strike me as fiery enough for Scarlett. Also, I love Guy Pierce as Ashley. Andrew-- pick more people I know, dammit! (l.o.l.) Caviezel is a good choice, as is Rosamund Pike.

Rav, Rav, Ray - What am I going to do with you, young man? Downey could probably pull off Rhett. He is strong visually, but would suck if he plays Butler the way he played Holmes {sic} neo-Roger Moore James Bond. Retract your heresy or may the dung of 1,000 camels infest your desert tent. Same with Kate Beckinsale, although you slightly redeemed with Guy Pierce :)

Tennessee Jed said...

P.S. when I keep referring to "love this or that choice" I am merely trying to slip into character as a casting director. Fabulous, darling! ;)

Tennessee Jed said...

Oh, and Floyd-- Reese could convincingly pull off Scarlett, I agree although she would have to go to her fiesty Reese as opposed to her June Carter Cash Reese. She could do a ton with that role with facial expressions alone "fiddle dee dee" indeed.

Patriot said...

Scarlett - Jennifer Connolly

Rhett - Hugh Jackman

Ashley - Johnny Depp

Melanie - Sandra Bullock

Mamie - Oprah Winfrey

Tennessee Jed said...

Patriot, looks like blogger went crazy!! Still, your choices are good. Oprah gets a nod for visuals, but I can't imagine her saying "T'aint fittin' . . . just t'ain't fitting."

ScottDS said...

Weird... I deleted the extra comments.

I'll have more to contribute later. :-)

Tennessee Jed said...

Oh and Rav-- lest we all forget, Vivian Leigh was British, so you needn't apologize for that. Hell, a lot of foreign actors are playing Americans better than Americans. Look at Daniel Day-Lewis for example.

Tennessee Jed said...

O.K., Andrew - most is forgiven. :) Mary Winstead definitely could do the visuals as Miss Scarlett. I haven't really seen enough of her as an actress to know if her chops are adequate. Once I recognized, Stephen McHattie, all I can say is: incredibly brave, but nonetheless interesting choice.

As I think about it, as much as I like Reese Witherspoon, she is getting a bit old for the role. Wow, that makes me realize I would be too old to play Scarlett's father (l.o.l.)

Tennessee Jed said...

Floyd - Alan Tudyk just might do a bang up job as Ashley Wilkes (Oh poor Scarlett, how little you understand me) Also, as I think about it, Johnny Depp might just be better as Rhett. He has a little of the swashbuckler imagery left over from his Jack Sparrow days.

Floyd R. Turbo said...

TN Jed... Reese Witherspoon.... yeah I meant by June Carter... that Reese could play a serious role and could give it some oomph. And I guess she is getting old at that... oh crap that means I'm older.

Hugh Jackman would do well as Rhett

T-Rav said...

Jed, Ppbbbbttttt. Really, I've seen Gone With the Wind maybe once in its entirety--actually, I don't think I watched it all the way through, come to think of it--so I did the best I could. And I stand by my choices, so there. ;-)

BevfromNYC said...

Robert Downey, Jr. for Rhett is intriguing.
Hugh Grant - Ashley Wilkes
Amy Adams - Melanie

Scarlet is hard - Emily Blunt might be interesting.

Tennessee Jed said...

Bev - Hugh Grant as Ashley would be a good one, I think. Just that hint of doddering wispiness. The question I have is whether you or my Nashville native wife have seen GWTW more times.

tryanmax said...

Like ScottDS, I've not seen GWTW and I don't have any short term plans of such a nature. So this is totally blind:

Zooey Deschanel as Scarlett O'Hara
Neil Patrick Harris as Rhett Butler
Paul Rudd as Ashley Wilkes
Kristen Schaal as Melanie Hamilton
Robert Downey Jr. as Mammy

Did I mention, also totally tongue-in-cheek?

Tennessee Jed said...

Max - Neil Patrick (Doogie) Harris as Rhett. Now that does draw not just a laugh, but a belly laugh.

Tennessee Jed said...

Emily Blunt could work as Miss Scarlett. She would keep the Brit angle alive for certain.

tryanmax said...

T-Jed, you can totally hear him delivering the "I don't give a damn" line, can you?

Tennessee Jed said...

Tryanmax - well yes in a way ;)

Tennessee Jed said...

Floyd & Patriot - I agree with you both that Jackman could do a credible Rhett Butler. And Liev Schreibner could pull it off as well. I do think Depp would better cast as Rhett than as Ashley, although he has a broad enough range to pull off either.

Tennessee Jed said...

Rav - don't you make me come down there and force you to sit through 30 back-to-back-to-back viewings (ha!)

Tennessee Jed said...

Patriot - back to your choices. Jennifer Connolly, like Reese is getting just a bit to old. She is visually stunning, maybe not quite flirtatious enough. Sandra Bullock has a huge likability factor, but might be just a tad "cute" for Melanie.

BevfromNYC said...

TennJ - If you wife is a Southerner, it would be a very hard won competition as to who has seen it more. The first time I saw it was at 11 or 12 yrs old on the big screen(a re-release How old do you think I AM?) in 1971. I fell in love with Ashley!

Tennessee Jed said...

BEV - MUCH younger than me :)

BevfromNYC said...

I could see Hugh Jackman more as Ashley. He's too lithe to be Rhett.

If Della Reese is still acting, she would make a great Mammie.

BevfromNYC said...

Scott - SHAME ON YOU! A film expert! How have you never seen GWTW? It was one of the first in Technicolor! The casting history! Just SHAME, SHAME, SHAME! :-)

Sandra Bullock is too old for Melanie, but she would make a great Ellen O'Hara.

Bob Hoskins would make a great Gerald O'Hara.

T-Rav said...

tryanmax, Zooey Deschannel as Scarlett? Somewhere, somehow, Andrew is sensing these words and having an aneurysm.

T-Rav said...

You know what, Jed? Gone With the Wind is overrated. There, I said it. Now if you'll excuse me, I need to go burn all documents, erase my hard drive, and live somewhere else under an assumed name until Bev is no longer around.

BevfromNYC said...

Neil Patrick Harris could play Charles Hamilton, Scarlett's delicate first husband (Melanie's brother).

Judith Ivey - Aunt Pittypat
Reese Witherspoon - India Wilkes or Suellen O'Hara

BevfromNYC said...

T-Rav - Oooooh, don't worry, but then again don't answer any knocking doors for a while...

AndrewPrice said...

Floyd, I thought about naming Tyler Perry! LOL! But I figured Bev would kill me.

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, I gotta go with my heart, not just people everyone knows! McHattie would be awesome. :)

Tennessee Jed said...

that may be awhile, though Rav. In honesty, GWTW the movie was a faithful adaption of an extremely popular novel. That is an incredibly hard thing to convert to film as we have often discussed.

GWTW is a nostalgic look at the highly romantic southern culture of the time. We cannot condone slavery, but there was definitely a "knight in shining armor" quality that can be looked upon with nostalgia. I was not alive in 1939, but can imagine the incredible energy surrounding the announcement of the film including casting choices. In that regard, and considering the state of cinema in 1939, I think the film makers did an amazing job of capturing that spirit. And there is no denying that GWTW, book and film is a rite of passage for young southern women of a certain age.

ScottDS said...

Bev -

That's why I don't claim to be a film expert! When you claim such things, people have expectations and there's a certain pressure to perform, so to speak. So consider me a film geek, which is not the same as an expert. :-)

Seriously, I was talking about this with a friend recently. Sometimes I think film school does a disservice to people who are into film because, depending on the instructor, you get the impression that, if you haven't seen X, Y, and Z, you're some kind of fraud, or not a "real" film buff, implying that anyone who's a film buff must like all the same things.

Well, too bad. I have a friend from film school who doesn't think Taxi Driver is all that. And me? I hated Bringing Up Baby. So there.

It's all BS. I even found an article that talks about something like this which I'm saving for the next link page at the end of the month.

AndrewPrice said...

Patriot, Good call actually on Oprah and I totally forgot about Jackman -- he'd be good in almost anything!

ScottDS said...

Gee, looking over the comments, I don't have much to contribute!

It's nice to see some Liev Schreiber love. I've been a fan of his since Sphere and it's a shame he isn't a bigger star. But I believe he's going to be starring on a Showtime series which is currently in production for next year.

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, Watch it, Bev won't like hearing that you aren't a HUGE fan of GWTW!

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, That happens sometimes... welcome to Blogger.

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, Scarlet was the most difficult I think because there are few women who display that kind of character anymore. Everyone now wants to be seen as sweet or tough, but nobody wants to be seen as manipulative.

AndrewPrice said...

tryanmax, You've hit upon something there. Your casting would either be pure genius or it would be utterly insane. LOL! Actually, it might make for an interesting parody.

tryanmax said...

T-Rav, Zooey D. is always good for that. Besides, I don't have to be able to stand her to look at her. That's what the mute button is for.

tryanmax said...

Good call on Liev Schreiber!

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, et. al, Normally, I'm a fan of Johnny Depp, but I think he's too slight to play Rhett. I could go with Schrieber though.

AndrewPrice said...

trynamax, My utter dislike for all things Zooey D is well documented. The woman should be banned from entertainment and made to work where her real talents lie. . . watching paint dry in a test lab.

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, You were 11 or 12 when GWTW was first released? Wow! Doesn't that make you like 118?

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, Zooey Deschannel as Scarlett? Somewhere, somehow, Andrew is sensing these words and having an aneurysm.

I did indeed sense a great disturbance in the force! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!

BIG MO said...

Only on I can think of at the moment is William Shatner as Scarlett's father.

And if this we made about 15 or so years ago, I'd cast Tom Selleck as Rhett.

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav and Bev, Play nice! LOL!

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, GWTW really does deserve the praise it gets. Even now, its still an excellent film that continues to draw in audiences who have no connection at all to the actors, to the topic, or to the age when the film was made. I suspect it will remain just as popular in 100 years as well because it's one of those things that just seems to capture so much of the human imagination.

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, There are different types of experts and it's not really about what you like -- anyone claiming you need to like certain things to be an expert is a fraud -- but it's about having seen and thought all of these films and understanding why they work or don't and why they've become classics (or haven't).

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, I'll tell you honestly why Schreiber isn't a star, IMO, is because he comes across like as asshole in real life. I think that makes it hard for people to like him enough to want to see him as a star.

AndrewPrice said...

Mo... the Shat! To boldly go where no man has gone before and to not give a damn! ;)

Floyd R. Tuyrbo said...

Scott DS... interesting concept your "film geek" vs. "film expert". I tell my students (I'm a college perfesser) in my Humanities classes that they don't have to like Bach or Beethoven (or insert any great artist here) but they need to appreciate their contributions and recognize their importance.

Citizen Kane is my exception in film. I don't even think it's Welles' best movie (that would be Touch of Evil) much less THE best of all time (that would be Casablanca) BUT I do recognize it is a towering achievement and groundbreaking. The crowd isn't always right, but neither are they always wrong. :-) Film geeks unite!

Academics serves (or can serve) a great purpose, but it can also stifle creativity. True artists can use the standard forms -- excel at them, but break through them and transcend them in many ways (or subvert or pervert them intentionally).

Tennessee Jed said...

Andrew - I do believe Tryanmax was pulling everybody's leg ;) Big Mo - I could se the Shat as Scarlett's daddy. Agree with you about Tom Sellick. Too old today, but at his height . . . .

Also, agree Schreiber is not likable, albeit a talented actor.

Tennessee Jed said...

Floyd - well said!!!

ScottDS said...

Floyd -

I appreciate the kind words, though I didn't put much thought into it - I simply felt Bev deserved an explanation. :-)

I can appreciate classic movies that I don't necessarily enjoy but being made to feel inferior because I don't enjoy them - that's where I draw the line.

As far as labels are concerned, "film geek" is a little more palatable. When people hear "film expert", they just assume you know everything and are just shocked - shocked!! - when they find out you don't.

tryanmax said...

Yes, I was pulling legs, or rather, assembling my parody cast. Even so, I can easily imagine Zooey D declaring she that will never go hungry again in her particularly vacuous fashion.

Patriot said...

Floyd......I agree with you on appreciation of contribution to film history........and music, art, etc...BTW, does anyone here remember "Sister Wendy" the PBS show of the little lisping nun who could explain art and art history better than anyone I've ever heard?! Talk about contributing to the oeuvre.......!

My actor(s) selection to GWTW was operating under the assumption that each of them would be cast at their most appropriate age and look for the part. Had nothing to do with acting ability. I'm thinking Jennifer Connolly in her "Rocketeer" age/role. What a magnificent specimen of femininity..which is just what is expected for the role of Miss Scarlett IMO.

Hugh Jackman can play the roue / gambler with the best of them. I always saw Depp as a little frail and vulnerable, similar to how I see Ashley Wilkes. Bullock, in her cutie prime as Melanie is too easy. And O as the "nice" Mammie role....and I'd add Michelle O as the "scolding/hectoring" Mammie....enough said.

T-Rav said...

Andrew, here's a question: Who, if you had to choose one, would you rather have in the role of Scarlett--Zooey Deschannel or Kristen Stewart? (Yes, I'm a terrible person.)

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, Kristen Stewart by a mile. Constipated and stupid is much better than entirely vacant and wooden.

AndrewPrice said...

Floyd, Well said! I agree entirely with your statement about art appreciation!

AndrewPrice said...

Jed and tryanmax, I figured that tryanmax was kidding. But still, the thought of Zooey Deschannel in... well, anything... is just too much to bear!

tryanmax said...

Funny, I almost went with Kristen Stewart, but I wasn't sure the my intentions would be understood as comedic.

T-Rav said...

Well, that was easily resolved. I was expecting a meltdown or something.

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, I have paradox resolving circuitry in my head. It keeps it from exploding when things happen like I'm asked to choose between two pathetic choices.


tryanmax, It would have been comedic, but probably not as funny.

T-Rav said...

Point of order, Andrew: That's not technically a paradox. A paradox is a logical contradiction, such as the statement "Zooey Deschannel is an annoying hipster, and yet a non-annoying non-hipster." Classic paradox. (Although actually, "non-annoying hipster" is a contradiction in and of itself, so my example could have been much simpler.)

Andrew's Head said...

If it's not a paradox, then they circuits won't work!


BANG!!!!!!!!!!!!

AndrewPrice said...

Ouch... damn Zooey Deschannel...

tryanmax said...

Most unanticipated thread hijack ever.

AndrewPrice said...

LOL! Sort of... yeah.

ScottDS said...

After reading the last handful of comments, this is how I feel right now. :-)

BTW, Andrew, I sent you an e-mail earlier. Check it at your leisure.

T-Rav said...

Darn, and here I thought that would be a lovely Deschannel music video. Anyway, I thought "You Are All Weirdos!" was already a matter of public record.

BevfromNYC said...

Why guess who is on TV right now?? Zooey Deschannel! I am soooo lucky!

AndrewPrice said...

Grrr.

T-Rav said...

You know what's an awesome TV show? New Girl, on Fox. You know what's an even more awesome movie? The Happening. Not to mention 500 Days of Summer.

AndrewPrice said...

Don't make me delete this blog!

Kit said...

Dont you be dissin' on Zooey now!
She's my lov!
And I enjoy NEW GIRL. So. . . SCREW YOU!!! :)

P.S. I have never seen THE HAPPENING and given what I've heard about it, I don't plan to.


"Don't let the sunshine fall from the sky;
Just find the sunshine in your own mind.
You're a lollipop, no second prize;
An apple somewhere, in somebody's eyes. . . "

ScottDS said...

Since this thread has gone somewhat off the rails...

Andrew, I sent you a reply e-mail...

...and I'm currently watching John Carter. So far, I have to say it's not bad, and definitely not deserving of its fate at the box-office.

Kit said...

Also, I have tried to watch GONE WITH THE WIND. Honestly, I have tried. IT'S TOO LOOOOOOOONNNNNG!!!!!

Maybe I'm just a ritalin fueled Millenial with no taste for the classics, I don't know.

--------------

Scott,
Bringing Up Baby is a comedy classic!

---------------

Casting? Hm, I know one!
Scarlett: Carol Burnett
Rhett Butler: Harvey Korman
Prissy: Vicki Lawrence
Ashley: Tim Conway
Melanie: Dinah Shore

It may not be original but the picks are perfect!

Kit said...

"Since this thread has gone somewhat off the rails..."

I'm trying to remember one at CommentaramaFilms that hasn't.

AndrewPrice said...

Kit, I'm sorry your girlfriend is a dud. ;)

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, Things always go off the rails around here. We shouldn't even have rails, except people enjoy taking things off the rails.

T-Rav said...

Not only that, I enjoy taking the rails themselves and twisting them into spirals of scrap. Goin' "Sherman neckties" on these threads, baby!

Kit, anything you want to say in the final minutes before Andrew deletes you?

Kit said...

"Kit, anything you want to say in the final minutes before Andrew deletes you?"

I am ashamed of nothing. NOTHING!

BevfromNYC said...

Well, Scott, at least there are no tacos!

Kit - I recommend reading the book, even though I love the movie and...
The Carol Burnett Show parody of GWTW is quite honestly one of THE most brilliant moments in television history, especially in the costume division. The curtain rod dress was just brilliant!

Andrew - Which is worse? Mentioning Zooey Deschannel or Janeane Garofalo? BTW - Where has Ms. Garofalo been lately? She hasn't shared her treasured thoughts in years!

rlaWTX said...

OK - this thread is hysterical!!!!
I cannot stand GWTW (the movie is okay, despite being interminably long, until the end - at which point I realized I had wasted 4 hrs of my life on a woman who was going to "think about it tomorrow", or "tomorrow is another day at Tara" - whatever she said. Seriously??!! The strong willed woman was a sham!!
That said, the acting was FANTASTIC! I don;t know any "young" actresses that could portray that range of time, growth, and character.
For Rhett, y'all have come up with some interesting choices that could work.
[I can't find a place for JStatham in this movie remake :( ]

rlaWTX said...

[BTW "Bringing Up Baby" is the worst CGrant/KHepburn movie. In fact, it is arguably the worst CGrant movie (except the first one w/ Mae West) and the worst KHepburn movie.]

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