Sunday, August 10, 2014

Dream Cast: Network (1976)

Hello, Bloggers, it has been ages since I last did a Dream Cast, so I figured that after a while, I would finally do a second one. Now, the classic film Network has become so essential, that the thought of it being remade might just be crazy. But I figured, just for fun, I would come up with my own dream cast in case they were to be crazy enough to remake it. Let's take a look:

Rebecca Hall as Diana Christensen: First I'll get into the juicy lead role of Diana Christensen, originated by Faye Dunaway. My cast pick for Diana would be Rebecca Hall, who you may know from The Town and Iron Man 3. When I was thinking of who could play the role of Diana, I thought of Hall's brilliant, multi-layered performance in Transcendence. I thought that if she were to play this role, she would inhale it and pull off Diana's cunningness without completely replicating Dunaway's portrayal.

Alternate Choices: Amy Adams, Jessica Chastain, and Reese Witherspoon

Liam Neeson as Max Schumacher: Now, Max was quite a difficult role to cast. But because William Holden , who originated the role, was in his 60's when the film was made, I searched for famous actors in their 60's and I thought of Liam Neeson. A role like this would really give Neeson a chance to shine in fare other than action films he has become known for and remind us that he is a capable dramatic actor as well. Plus, I imagined him doing the scene where Max confesses his infidelity to his wife and just nailing it.

Alternate Choices: Tom Hanks

Mark Ruffalo as Howard Beale: Next is the juicy role of Howard Beale, originated by Peter Finch. Like Max, Howard was another difficult role to cast, especially since Finch's portrayal has become so iconic. But if there is anybody that I feel could fill his shoes, it is Mark Ruffalo. He may be known for playing everyman-type characters, but in some of his more recent roles like in The Avengers and The Normal Heart, he has shown quite a bit of angry fire and the role of Howard is just flaming hot.

Peter Sarsgaard as Frank Hackett: Now onto a more low-key role: Frank Hackett, originally played by Robert Duvall. The role of Frank Hackett is quite villainous, so I figured I'd go with an actor that can play quite a good villain in a rather subtle way, so I went with Peter Sarsgaard. Not only do I think Sarsgaard would be quite good in this role, but a role like this would finally give an actor like him his due.

John Goodman as Arthur Jensen: Next is the much shorter role of Arthur Jensen, originated by Ned Beatty. Now, Arthur Jensen is a character that only has one scene, so I figured that I would pick an actor that has become Hollywood's go-to guy for 5-minute roles: John Goodman. Seriously, Goodman takes 5-minute role after 5-minute role and nails it every single time. If he were to play Arthur, it would be no different.

Laura Linney as Louise Schumacher: Now onto the only other 5-minute role on this list and in the film, the suffering wife Louise Schumacher. The role was originated by Beatrice Straight, who won the Oscar for her portrayal. But whether the role were to be just as short or longer, one actress I could imagine nailing it is Laura Linney. The only films I have seen with her thus far have been supporting roles but she is absolutely splendid in those. Plus, like Rebecca Hall as Diana, I could see Linney doing the role justice without replicating Straight's short but sweet portrayal.

Alternate Choices: Cate Blanchett

Lupita Nyong'o as Laureen Hobbs: The final role on this list is African-American underground activist Laureen Hobbs, originally played by Marlene Whitfield. For this role, my casting choice is Oscar-winner Lupita Nyong'o. The character itself is somebody who is very fierce and strong-willed and an actress like Nyong'o could easily benefit from a role like this one. One reason is it would demonstrate her range as an actress and another is that decent roles for actresses of color are hard to come by and Nyong'o could easily benefit from a role like this, especially after winning an Oscar.

So, those were my casting choices for the film Network if they were to remake it today. If you agree or disagree with my choices or would like to offer your own casting picks, please feel free to write in the comments section. Thanks for reading!