Casting Couch: August News

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Ving Rhames returning as Luther Stickell (Mission: Impossible 5)

Thumbs Up: Ving Rhames hasn’t done much the last few years, but he’s always welcome in this franchise. It’s not a Mission: Impossible movie unless Luther Stickwell pops up. (DC)

Thumbs Up: Rhames returning as one of Tom Cruise’s fellow spies for another Mission: Impossible film is not exactly the biggest surprise in the world, but it is nice to see that one of the series’ best supporting actors will officially be returning for the newest installment. He’s been my favorite character in the series next to Simon Pegg’s Benji (who will also be returning), so I expect the same slick coolness he’s brought to all the other films. (JM)

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Jungle Book: Origins Round Up
Benedict Cumberbatch as Shere Kahn (voice)
Christian Bale as Bagheera (voice)
Cate Blanchett as Kaa (voice)

Thumbs Up to All: Wait, didn’t we already cover this casting for The Jungle Book? Nope! In classic Hollywood fashion, we got a competing Jungle Book movie only one year after the Jon Favreau version. And while we’ve praised that casting up and down, this line up is no slouch either. I like Benedict Cumberbatch a lot, but I think we need to calm down with this guy. He’s getting way too overexposed. His best attribute though is his voice, so he does fit Shere Kahn like a glove. Cate Blanchett as Kaa – what else is there to say? What intrigues me most with this one is obviously Christian Bale. Bale is easily one of the top five actors today, and I like how this is a departure for him. This project also intrigues me in that it’s Andy Serkis’ directorial debut, making this another Jungle Book movie to keep an eye on. (DC)

Thumbs Up: After appearing in almost every other major movie for the past two years I am officially tired of Benedict Cumberbatch (aka Benadryl Cucumberpatch aka Balderdash Chipwich aka Bandicoot Crashbandicoot). His casting here, while tiring to me, is actually very fitting for the villainous tiger. Bale and Blanchett add extra star power to the first film directed by motion capture virtuoso Andy Serkis, and hopefully their live action acting power translates well to voice acting. (JM)

Patrick Warburton returning in Ted 2

Thumbs Up: Patrick Warburton can roll out of bed and be funny. If you remember that horrible movie from last year (Movie 43), Warburton was the only person who still managed to be funny. He was hilarious in the original Ted, and I look forward to his return. (DC)

Thumbs Down: I’ve always enjoyed Warburton character actor, going back to his days on Seinfeld and his voice acting on the Venture Bros. He’s worked with Seth MacFarlane on Family Guy and the first Ted movie, and god I could not be dreading this movie any more. The first Ted was a slightly funny if crass comedy, but this year’s A Million Ways to Die in the West was putrid in every sense of the word and should have been bad enough to force Macfarlane out of Hollywood. It didn’t, and this casting choice is bad by virtue of letting me know this movie will exist. (JM)

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Vacation re-launch Round Up
Charlie Day as a river guide
Chris Hemsworth as Stone Crandall, Audrey’s husband

Thumbs Up on Day/Thumbs Down on Hemsworth: Charlie Day is very funny, and apparently he’s playing a river guide, so we’re all good there. Chris Hemsworth on the other hand, not so much. Chris Hemsworth was excellent in the original Thor, but now I see that was all Kenneth Branagh. While Rush never had a chance of being a great movie, another actor could have done more with Hemsworth’s role. And I’m sorry, he sleep walks through Thor: The Dark World. Hemsworth doing comedy? Yeah, I don’t know about that one. (DC)

Thumbs Down: The remake/reboot/relaunch/sequel of 80s comedy classic Vacation seems to have been in and out of production for years now, but the latest attempt with Ed Helms at the lead seems to be the real deal. Day and Hemsworth’s roles are most likely going to just be small cameos, which is disappointing because the idea of Charlie Day as a river guide should be enough to warrant its own movie. (JM)

Tom Hanks returning as Robert Langdon (Inferno)

Thumbs WAY Down: You got to be kidding me with this. Tom Hanks is one of the greatest actors of all time, and him playing this role is an absolute waste of time. I’m sure Hanks has about thirty better options as opposed to this garbage. Come on, man! And do people even want to see this? Angels and Demons didn’t do that great at the box office, and that was five years ago! This makes no sense on all fronts. Ugh. (DC)

Thumbs Down: Tom Hanks reprises dumb role in dumb movie based off dumb book by dumb author about dumb conspiracy theories all while sporting a dumb haircut. These movies based off Dan Brown’s mystery series have always been lameduck disappointments that are about as bland as summer blockbusters can get. So of course it will probably make half a billion dollars in worldwide box office. (JM)

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Steve Carell in an unspecified role (ACME Looney Tunes Spin-Off Project)

Thumbs Down: For my money, Steve Carell is a much better dramatic actor than comedic one, and I have a feeling that will be validated when we see Foxcatcher later this year. Steve Carell just doesn’t make me laugh, I’m sorry. I’d rather watch a Pauly Shore movie than see five more minutes of Carell playing Brick Tamland. Putting Steve Carell in a Looney Tunes spin-off about the ACME corporation? Yeah, no thanks. (DC)

Thumbs Up: Carell’s has a sense of humor that is perfect for a Looney Tunes film. Looney Tunes movies have always had a mix of verbal comedy and physical comedy, and Carell has proven again and again his adeptness for comedic timing and slapstick. Working with both live action and animation is always a new challenge for most actors, but I know Carell is up to the task. (JM)

Charlie Hunnam as King Arthur (King Arthur)

Thumbs Undecided: This really comes down to me not having seen Sons of Anarchy yet, which I do plan on doing. People seem to like Hunnam though, and I’m glad he escaped that whole Fifty Shades of Grey debacle. I can definitely see Hunnam in this role, I just got to do my homework. (DC)

Thumbs Somewhere in the Middle: I haven’t watched enough Sons of Anarchy to get a good idea of Hunnam’s more in depth acting skills, but he was a serviceable lead in Pacific Rim who understandably was overshadowed by the special effect in that movie. He’ll definitely have more acting to do in King Arthur, but I can imagine he’s had enough experience to take on an acting and action heavy role like this. (JM)

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