If it wasn’t for the Australian rain, ‘Hollywood’s most wanted’ Tom Hardy and South African beauty Charlize Theron would have been shooting Warner Bros. delayed Mad Max: Fury Road right now. However, still eager to go toe-to-toe with each other, the pair are circling a fast-tracked tentpole at a rival studio.
Universal are pushing forward with Snow White and the Huntsmen, a re-imagining of the Brothers Grimm fable that screenwriter Evan Daugherty (‘Grayskull’) sold to the studio this year in a $1.5 million over $3 million deal. They want Theron and Hardy to star.
One of the larger script sales of 2010 despite the story being based on a property that is years out of copyright (and subsequently the focus of two further adaptations at different studio’s – one at Disney that finds Shaolin monks replacing dwarves – and Brothers Grimm: Snow White at Relativity that has gathered some momentum), the movie is just the latest in a long line of fairytale-inspired tentpoles to be born out of the success of Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland.
The Playlist have the scoop -
The project takes a revisionist buddy movie spin on the tale, seeing the titular huntsman being hired by the evil queen to track down her runaway stepdaughter, the fairest in all the land. When he realizes that the queen intends to kill Snow White, he helps her escape, and the pair go on the run.
Hardy is up for Eric, the Huntsmen, Theron for the Evil Queen (after Angelina Jolie seemingly passed), whilst the fairest of them all would probably be played by an unknown. A wide U.K. casting search is already underway for the virtuous and kind-hearted lead. Commercials helmer Rupert Sanders will make his big screen debut.
No contracts have yet to be signed and there’s only likely to be a short window that Hardy will be available. Once the Mad Max gig got the 1 year delay, he moved onto the ridiculous sounding New York set-comedy This Means War which keeps him busy till the end of the year, before Batman 3 films in the Spring. So if Universal can get this one in shape for filming in January, then there’s a small chance he could do this.
Ultimately, we think Hardy might struggle to fit it in and will pass. The Playlist say;
we looked at Daugherty’s script, and it’s actually very strong, one of the better action-adventure scripts we’ve read in a while. It’s faithful to the fairy tale, beat-for-beat, but manages to remain fresh and surprising in a way that, say, Burton’s film didn’t. And Hardy’s role, as Eric, the huntsman haunted by the death of his wife at the hands of a white wolf, is a doozy—tragic, heroic but with enough roguish charm to play to his strengths—and should see him move even further up the A-list.
Hopefully if Hardy does pass, Theron can stay on. She proved recently in her ‘Between Two Fearns’ skit that she can do humour as well as anyone and I feel like I’ve seen her out-act enough of her peers in the Oscar material this last decade that a shift of pace could be good for her.
Theron is currently filming Young Adult for director Jason Reitman which keeps her busy for the rest of 2010, but is free 2011 as far as we can tell.