The Casting Couch: 2/18/13

daniel cohen and bill bodkin debut a new column…

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If there’s ever a topic in the movie industry that’s always open for debate — it’s casting. Much like off-season moves in football and baseball, there’s rumors, speculation and then finally, the moves themselves. ESPN spends hours agonizing over these topics (please, did you forget about Lebron’s free agent tour a few years back or all the Tebow trade speculation last summer?), so why can’t the movie buffs have their chance to dissect and analyze cinematic rumblings and decisions?

So our film editor Daniel Cohen and our editor-in-chief Bill Bodkin (well at least for this week) are weighing in casting news and rumors that’s just hit Hollywood. They’ll give their bluntly honest opinions and rate each with a classic ‘thumbs up’ or ‘thumbs down,’ but we reserve the right to also feel undecided too.

Paul Giamatti as the Rhino (The Amazing Spider-Man 2):

Thumbs-Up: This whole idea intrigues me a great deal. This probably means a significant change will be made to the character, but is this really that much different from Rhys Ifans playing the Lizard? I’m sure the Rhino stuff will be heavy CG anyway. The point is, Giamatti is a great actor, and I’m happy to see him in anything. –DC

Thumbs Down: Seriously? Don’t get me wrong, Paul Giamatti is a fantastic actor…but Rhino? Rhino is a thug for hire, someone who as his comic book creators dubbed him — one of Spidey’s ‘dimmest villains.’ The roll seems plum for someone like former WWE star Dave Bautista, someone who’s extremely muscle bound or maybe even Joel Edgerton, who has some definition to him, but can also act his ass off. Maybe even Russell Crowe, who has a bit more a sawed off presence. Paul Giamatti is right for a more talkative and more cerebral villain. –BB

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Emily VanCamp as Sharon Carter (Captain America: The Winter Soldier):

*Note: Sharon Carter is unconfirmed, but heavily rumored

Undecided: I haven’t seen Revenge, and don’t really know anything about this actress. I’m just hoping the character is Sharon Carter, as the daughter of Peggy Carter played by Haley Atwell in the original film, would make for an interesting conflict for Cap.

Undecided: Emily VanCamp is a wildly attractive actress, but seems to have the charisma of three day old meatloaf. She’s going to play the requisite love interest for Cap, but honestly, she’s not going to be the main focus of the film. I’m much more interested in the ‘Winter Soldier’ AKA the former Bucky Barnes as well as Anthony Mackie’s appearance as The Falcon. –BB

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Johnny Depp as Whitey Bulger (Black Mass):

Thumbs Down: Not really a Depp fan, and the last time we saw him as a gangster was John Dillinger in Public Enemies…BOOOOOOOOOORIIIIIIIIIING. –DC

Thumbs Up: I am a Depp fan and thought he was solid as John Dillinger and that Public Enemies a very entertaining film. Depp is a master actor and he needs an escape from the Jack Sparrow-esque world he’s been living in for the past decade. –BB

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Kristen Wiig as Brick Tamland’s Wife/Girlfriend (Anchorman: The Legend Continues):

Thumbs Down: I don’t like Anchorman and I don’t like Bridesmaids. That means two things: 1) I don’t care much for this news. 2) By admitting I don’t like the two films just mentioned, I’ve angered the whole internet. –DC

Thumbs Up: This is awesome. I loved Anchorman and I loved Bridesmaids. Kristen Wiig is one of the funniest women working in Hollywood and her teaming with Steve Carrell is going to be golden. –BB

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Chris Pratt as Star-Lord (Guardians of the Galaxy):

Thumbs Up: I don’t know much about Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, but I do know it’s more on the comedic side, especially with the hire of James Gunn as director. Pratt is a great choice. While he’s funny, he also proved in Zero Dark Thirty he can be serious when need be. Solid choice. –DC

Thumbs Up: I concur with Dan. Pratt’s proven he can do the action gig and we all know he’s funny. So being a superhero like Star-Lord is a smart move for his career and a smart move for Marvel, picking a hot commodity like Pratt as one of their new leading men. –BB

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Founded in September 2009, The Pop Break is a digital pop culture magazine that covers film, music, television, video games, books and comics books and professional wrestling.