After successfully bulking up enough to trade blows and dialogue with Tom Hardy in the recent fight film Warrior, Australian actor Joel Edgerton has proven that he can pretty much do anything. And after starring in another recent, high profile Hollywood film, the remake of The Thing, he has shown that he’s an actor whose star power is on the rise. So it makes sense to me that Warner Bros. and director Noam Murro would be looking at him to fill Gerard Butler’s shoes as the star of a 300 movie. According to Vulture, Edgerton is in talks to join Murro’s 300 sequel/prequel Battle of Artemisia as the lead badass Themistocles.
Themistocles was an Athenian general and politician who is mostly remembered for leading the Athenian Navy in a successful campaign to beat back a Persian invasion. After his military exploits, he stuck around Athens as a bigwig politician, but eventually rubbed a lot of people the wrong way because of his arrogance. Also, he rubbed the Spartans the wrong way because of his insistence that Athens be refortified. Once he was eventually ostracized from Athens, he had nowhere else to go in Greece – he had pissed pretty much everyone off. What choice did that leave him? It meant that, in a stunning bit of irony, he had to flee to Persia and work in service of their king.
I’m not sure how much of Themistocles’ story is going to be told in this movie, but I assume that they’re probably going to stick to the fame-making battles that initially had him heralded as a hero. That decision will be made by Zack Snyder, who wrote the script for this film from a still upcoming graphic novel by 300 creator Frank Miller.
Also, there is still no word if Edgerton will get a chance to yell, “This is Athens!” in the Battle of Artemisia trailer should he actually sign for the role.