Casting For "Hitch-Hiker's Guide To The Galaxy"

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Jason Seaver, Jan 13, 2004.

  1. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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    Apparently, it's filming this year for a summer '05 release. According to this article:

    http://www.zap2it.com/movies/news/st...-20096,00.html

    ... one Martin Freeman has been cast as Arthur and Bill Nighy will be Slartibartfast.

    Okay, I've loved Bill Nighy in almost everything I've seen him in (and hope he got paid really well for Underworld), and the test for Slartibartfast is whether you can see him saying "it's a threat of sorts; I've heard their terribly effective". He passes.

    Freeman... I'm not so sure on. I admit, I wanted Hugh Laurie. Douglas Adams wanted Hugh Laurie. Is Hugh Laurie getting too long in the tooth to play Arthur? Because Freeman seemed awful young for the role in Love Actually, where he was one of the stand-ins. I've heard he's great on The Office, though.
     
  2. MatthewLouwrens

    MatthewLouwrens Producer

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    I don't know that I like either of these casting choices.

    Freeman could be good - but he'll have to play a lot more British than he did in The Office. Still that's acting, I guess. Hugh Laurie would have been perfect.

    Bill Nighy is just wrong. I cannot see him as Slartibartfast. Slartibartfast should be old, senile, weak. Bill Nighy comes across as an aging rocker (something casting directors apparently recognise - it's a role he's been cast in several times), and when he says "Late, as in the late Arthur Dent", I have difficulty imagining him doing it without it coming out as an effective recognisable threat - which obviously it shouldn't.
     
  3. Paul_Sjordal

    Paul_Sjordal Supporting Actor

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  4. George See

    George See Second Unit

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    I'm a little disapointed I really had it stuck in my head that it should have been Rowan Atkinson as Arthur and John Cleese as Ford. IMHO that would have been perfect.
     
  5. Dennis Nicholls

    Dennis Nicholls Lead Actor

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    And Bill Murray as Marvin the robot?
     
  6. George See

    George See Second Unit

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    Actually I hadn't given much thought to Marvin, but now that I think about it...how about Ben Stein?
     
  7. MatthewLouwrens

    MatthewLouwrens Producer

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    Sorry, I disagree there, as well.
    Rowan Atkinson as Arthur? Arthur should be played completely straight, and I think Rowan just looks like he would be trying to be funny. He could work as Ford though - I could buy him as an alien.
    John Cleese, quite aside from his age, seems insufficiently alien. He is too English.
     
  8. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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    I always had Stephen Fry & Hugh Laurie as Arthur & Ford, respectively... Although when I read that Adams wanted Hugh Laurie to play Arthur, I reversed their roles. It works either way, I think.
     
  9. Paul_Sjordal

    Paul_Sjordal Supporting Actor

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    No! Ford Prefect should be played by Danny Devito! Also, Marvin should be played by Pauly Shore. Any chance we could get Judy Tenuta for Trillian?
     
  10. Chris Lynch

    Chris Lynch Stunt Coordinator

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    I never really worry about casting if the director and casting director are worthy of the material.

    Which leads me to this question:

    Who the heck is Garth Jennings? How did he get this job? I'm not trying to be difficult, I really would like to know.

    I've been waiting a long time for this movie. Please, please, please don't screw it up...
     
  11. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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    More news

    Americans. If you're going to cast young Americans, though, Zooey Deschanel, is potentially a brilliant choice as Trillian. I don't see Mos Def as Ford, though; but maybe that's just from only seeing him in The Italian Job.
     
  12. Robert Anthony

    Robert Anthony Producer

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    Mos Def has some range. I belive he's been doing some off-broadway stuff. the whole rapper/actor thing shouldn't be much of an issue--he hasn't really recorded anything since his solo album dropped back in 99--he's devoted most, if not all of his creative focus towards his acting. He has a small role in Monster's Ball as Billy Bob's neighbor.

    I might be biased, tho--that album was my favorite album of that year, and I've seen him in some sketch comedy and some dramatic stuff, and he's really impressed me there, so I'm kind of rooting for him to pull this off.
     
  13. Michael St. Clair

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    This will of course make me sound like a total 'Coupling' fanboy, but I think Richard Coyle or Jack Davenport could pull Arthur off.
     
  14. MatthewLouwrens

    MatthewLouwrens Producer

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    I'm still not liking any of these casting decisions. Zooey Deschanel is too young to play someone with a degree in Math and another in astrophysics - and what is with the casting of Amercians to play a girl who lived in Islington? Both the TV series and (apparently) the movie have done it.

    As for Mos Def - Ford is supposed to be an alien. He passes for human, but there is something unsettling, slightly off about him. I didn't think much about the acting of the TV series Ford, but he looked right. Mos Def looks like a normal person, and thus completely wrong.
     
  15. Scott Weinberg

    Scott Weinberg Lead Actor

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    Mos Def - I just saw him in a flick called The Woodsman; he plays a cop who is suspicious of a convicted pedophile (Kevin Bacon) after his return from prison. This guy's good! Seriously! I don't exactly see him as Ford either (I was picturing someone slick and smug, like an Animal House - era Tim Matheson...only British.) But the guy's not a bad actor at all, so I cede to the casting directors on this one.

    And while I agree that Zooey might be a little young-ish to play Trillian, that's a concession I'm willing to make. Because I love Zooey, and I'm thrilled she got this part. I always saw Trillian as sweet yet aloof; ZD could do that in her sleep.

    Bill Nighy as Slart? Sure, why not. Obviously he'll be 'aged up' but he's a funny guy. He'll do fine. Not that large a part anyway...

    Martin Freeman, I'm sad to admit, I know very little about. I did see Ali G Indahouse and Love Actually...but his face escapes me right now. If he can do a "likable English schlub" then he's halfway there.

    As someone who has read the first four novels three times each (they're like candy!), I'm obviously very psyched (and a little bit nervous) about this adaptation. Pleased to see it's finally happening, worried that it might deviate too much from the books I love a lot, and sad that Douglas Adams isn't around to see the movie after all this time.
     
  16. Ross Williams

    Ross Williams Supporting Actor

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    I know most of you will hate this, but he's a music video director. Probably most famous for the Blur video "Coffee & TV", the one with the walking milk carton. Check out: http://www.tongsville.com/ - click under films for a sample of his work. After I watched a couple of these, I could tell he has the right sensibility and the technical savvy to make this film right.
     
  17. MatthewLouwrens

    MatthewLouwrens Producer

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    She wasn't an alien - she was a girl who Arthur once met at a party. Zaphod gatecrashed the party, and took Trillian away.

    Any word yet on whether Marvin will be voiced by Stephen Moore? And who will be voicing The Book. Because these are the final make-or-break elements for me.

    Incidentally, the more I think about it, the more I can see Martin Freeman as an acceptable Arthur. Doesn't look much like Simon Jones though. I still prefer Hugh Laurie.
     
  18. Scott Weinberg

    Scott Weinberg Lead Actor

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    Well, here's some interesting news, courtesy of Coming Soon:



    Now, I don't exactly see Sam as Zaphod, but I absolutely love the guy. He's the best thing in Charlie's Angels, in my book he stole The Green Mile whole, he delivered the biggest laughs in Galaxy Quest, and he was drop-dead awesome in Confessions of a Dangerous Mind. So while I still don't "see" it, I gotta give the casting folks their due credit for hiring a real actor for the role.
     
  19. MatthewLouwrens

    MatthewLouwrens Producer

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    Sam Rockwell as Zaphod. Finally, some casting I can agree with. I can see him as Zaphod.
     
  20. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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    I can see that; Zaphod's the only member of the cast I felt really should be filled by an American, anyway.
     

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