Reboot Ladyhawke

Ladyhawke was on TV the other day, and I ended up watching it all the way through for the first time in probably twenty years. I have fond memories of that movie from when I was a kid, and even now the story holds up, but watching it as an adult exposes some pretty glaring flaws. Clunky dialogue, some fight scenes that need better choreography, and the music… oh my God, was that music awful. Parts of it sound like a cheesy 80’s infomercial. The score is great, don’t get me wrong. It’s the upbeat synth tracks that play over the intro and the early fight scenes that drive me crazy.

(Wait until the 1:00 mark)

Basically what I’m saying is that this movie is ripe for a reboot. I’m not a huge fan of the reboot craze, but I’ll watch a good one if it’s done right (i.e. the first JJ Trek, Batman Begins, Ghostbusters, although it had some flaws, Casino Royale). And Ladyhawke strikes me as the type of story that’s hard to screw up. Romance, action, fantasy, interesting characters, drama. It’s all there, and in just the right amounts. And two knights beating the crap out of each other in a cathedral at the end is pretty awesome.

A quick Google search shows no serious attempts to reboot the movie already in progress, but I guess that just means I get to be the flag-bearer for this cause. Yay, me! So let’s do a bit of fan-casting for this endeavor, shall we? In looking up this topic, I found a few other fan-casts already out there, but I want to zero in on one particularly interesting list from IMDB, which you can find here. If you don’t want to click the link, the list is as follows:

Phillipe Gaston – Jesse Eisenberg

Captain Etienne Navarre – Michael Fassbender

Isabeau d’Anjou – Gemma Arterton

Father Imperius – Alfred Molina

The Bishop of Aquila – Jeremy Irons

Marquet – Richard Armitage

Cezar – Charles Mesure

It’s only a year old, and the actors and actresses are all pretty decent fits. In fact, two of the picks are pretty inspired casting if you ask me. However, I think we can do a little bit better…

 

GLENDALE, CA - JULY 31: Actor Logan Lerman arrives at the premiere of 'Percy Jackson: Sea Of Monsters' at The Americana at Brand on July 31, 2013 in Glendale, California. (Photo by Angela Weiss/Getty Images)

Phillipe Gaston – Logan Lerman

This is by far the hardest role to recast.

Phillipe, as played by Mathew Broderick, came off as charming, witty, overconfident, a tiny bit dishonorable, and hilariously deadpan in his delivery. In other words, Broderick owned this role from the get go. I don’t mind the Jesse Eisenberg pick, and I normally like him in whatever he does, but I don’t think the Phillipe role needs, or would be strengthened by the slightly neurotic personality Eisenberg is so good at affecting. Eisenberg can do a lot of what Broderick did, but I have trouble imagining the same sense of lost innocence, or those moments of silent discovery where a lot of exposition happens purely by watching an actor’s eyes. Go back and watch the scene where Gaston sees Michelle Pfeiffer on the table in the old castle, and you see him at first shocked to find her, while also showing that he kind of knew. That moment is important, because his relationship with everyone else in the movie is based on that foundation.

So if not Jesse Eisenberg, then who? Logan Lerman is my tentative pick. The guy looks a tiny bit like a young Ferris Bueller, and even more importantly, he has that confidence, that strut that an overconfident thief should have. He can also show terror, fear, and a change in how he sees the world (as seen in Fury). Either way, he plays his scenes like he knows what he’s doing, even when he doesn’t. And more importantly, he’s legitimately younger than Eisenberg, which I think is important here.

Also, remember earlier where I said this is the hardest role to recast? It’s also the one I feel the least confident about…

 

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Captain Etienne Navarre – Michael Fassbender

I don’t have a problem with this pick. In fact, I think it’s perfect. Fassbender already kills it in everything he does, and I don’t think it’s a stretch to think he can handle the dangerously brooding soldier on a mission of revenge. X-Men First Class anyone? Plus, he kinda captures the Rutger Hauer thing, just like Logan Lerman has a little bit of Matthew Broderick.

As a backup, how about Nikolaj Coster-Waldau? My only problem with him is that his portrayal of Jaime Lannister is a little too similar to this. If I see him in armor, wielding a sword, or flashing that cocky grin, I’ll start thinking of Game of Thrones and wonder why he’s cheating on Lena Heady’s Cersei with Isabeau.

Speaking of Isabeau…

 

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Isabeau d’Anjou – Katheryn Winnick

I’m not feeling the Gemma Arterton pick. I like her, she’s pretty, and she’s a good actress, but I just don’t see her as Isabeau, especially not if we’re already leaning a little toward the original in terms of casting. So how about Katheryn Winnick? She’s stunning, both physically and in personality, and it would be easy to see how both Navarre and the Bishop fell for her hard enough that a demonic pact was invoked. Plus, now that she’s missed out on the fan casting for Captain Marvel (congrats Brie Larson) we can easily plug her into this movie instead!

 

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Father Imperius – Alfred Molina

C’mon, how PERFECT is this? Molina played Cezar in the first movie, and I’m not against him reprising that role, but let’s give him something meatier this time around. And Father Imperius is the perfect role for him in a reboot. First, it ties the two movies together by having him in it, far more than trying to put Rutger Hauer in the Bishop role (which might be interesting…). And second, Molina is a fun actor to watch, just in general. Imagine him with crazy hair and a gravelly voice, hiding out in an old castle, lamenting his betrayal of two people in love. I’m 100% on board with this.

 

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The Bishop of Aquila – Colin Firth

While researching this article, I scanned through a lot of actor bios, trying to find the right fits for each role. While looking for the Bishop, as soon as I saw Colin Firth, I stopped. I can’t really put it into words, beyond just saying that this FITS somehow. Firth has that quintessential English demeanor to him, stoic, unsmiling, hiding his thoughts and emotions behind a façade that is rarely broken. That’s what we need from the Bishop, the primary antagonist of this movie. A man of the cloth, who so lusted after a woman that he turned on his trusted follower and cursed two people to spend eternity both together, and apart.

Plus, it would be fun to see him as a bad guy.

 

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Marquet – Richard Armitage

I went back and forth on this one. Richard Armitage was the IMDB pick, and at first I dismissed him, thinking he just wasn’t right. I started looking at a few other guys, like Jude Law and Stephen Moyer, guys who I thought could pull of the evil Captain of the Bishop’s Guard. But Jude Law felt overplayed, and I started to realize that Stephen Moyer just didn’t look dastardly enough. In other words, the more I thought about it, the more I realized just how genius the original pick was. I like the quiet intensity, and, like a lot of the other picks, he looks similar to the original actor.

 

NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 06: Actor Alexander Skarsgard poses backstage at the Rock & Republic Spring 2009 fashion show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week at The Tent, Bryant Park on September 6, 2008 in New York City. (Photo by Amy Sussman/Getty Images for IMG)

Cezar – Billy Zane/Gerard Butler/Karl Urban/Alexander Skarsgard

At this point, all we need is someone with crazy eyes and wild hair (or a wig) who can be scary when discovered in a dark alley. Billy Zane is my ‘oh, what the hell’ pick, just because it would be fun to see him do it. Karl Urban and Gerard Butler can both pull it off to varying degrees, although I think both might play the role a little too intensely than needed. Alexander Skarsgard is my dark horse, though, and it’s mostly because of the image above. That’s the look of a guy who could play a slightly off balance wolf trapper chasing after our heroes in a dark forest.

 

So what do you guys think? And who has the number to a Hollywood producer?

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