I call bullshit on this one…
MTV Movies Blog is reporting that Russell Crowe will play both the Sheriff of Nottingham and the outlaw Robin Hood in Ridley Scott’s upcoming film, Nottingham. They got this gem straight from Scott himself during an interview for his current film, Body of Lies.
“He’s playing both!” Scott told MTV, adding that it would take too long to describe the details. All he would offer as explanation was that the roles contain “a good old clever adjustment of characters. One becomes the other. It changes.” Great, Ridley Scott presents The Corsican Brothers! If you’re doing press for a film with the word “lies” in the title, why not throw a few in to the interview itself? Especially in regards to a movie that has already seen its fair share of casting rumors flying fast and furious online.
The basic premise of Nottingham is that it’s a revisionist take on the classic Robin Hood tale of an evil sheriff and a rascally outlaw who steals from the rich and gives to the poor. Nottingham flips that scenario and instead presents a misunderstood and conflicted sheriff and a greedy rapscallion in tights ripping off the rich for his own gain. Crowe has been cast for quite some time as the sheriff, and the role of Robin Hood has been rumored to stars as diverse as Christian Bale and Sam Riley.
So if this report is true, and Crowe will in fact be playing both characters… how will it work? Seems to me there are only two options, and I’m not a fan of either one.
First, they could literally have Crowe playing both men as two distinct people, and simply have some physical characteristic like facial hair, a prosthetic nose, or an eye patch to distinguish the two. They of course would have to be twin brothers. This is lame. The second option would be for Crowe to play one character, the Sheriff of Nottingham, who has grown so frustrated and disillusioned with the corrupt monarchy that he decides to throw on a disguise and start redistributing the wealth. Less lame, but still lame enough. The biggest drawback here is that there would be no real conflict or clash at the end because Crowe can’t really fight himself. (Although Crowe channeling Ed Norton in Fight Club could be entertaining…)
Since both of those ideas suck, and I have more faith in Ridley Scott’s storytelling abilities, I must once again call bullshit on this report. God I hope it’s bullshit…
What do you think about Crowe playing both roles? Do you believe the casting news? What are some other possible scenarios aside from twins or the Sheriff wearing a mask? Is Kevin Costner’s ‘Robin Hood Prince of Thieves’ one of your guilty pleasures too?