Monday, April 14, 2008

Time for a "Stranger" Movie

OK, not really, but it's fun to think about the prospect of a Stranger in a Strange Land movie that doesn't suck. What are the odds? Well, considering the mess made of every previous R.A.H. film project (with the possible exception of Destination Moon which wasn't terrible, just boring), poor... piss poor. But, Stranger in a Strange Land could be a really terrific movie... in the right hands.

First off, the story is a fairy tale. It even begins with the phrase "Once upon a time..." The film would have to begin with a narrated segment if only to get those words in, then anyone who takes it too seriously can't claim that they weren't warned. Having narration at the beginning actually solves one of the other particular problems which is, how to present the events of "His Maculate Conception" in a compact and entertaining manner. For this, I'm seeing a fairy-tale style cartoon depicting the events of the first mission to Mars (the one that ends with an illegitimate child in the care of Martians and the rest of the crew dead). The narrator would relate the official, heroic account of how the crew was selected and how they performed leaving the disappearance of the ship a mystery. The visuals would depict the sordid truth leaving no mystery whatsoever what happened. That would take three minutes or so and allow the film to launch into the real action.

All right, I'm distracting myself from the fun part of this post, which is deciding who I would cast in the movie. Obviously, I have both infinite influence to get people to be in the thing and infinite money to pay actors. While I'm at it, I'm also the King of France... no somewhere nice... Romania. Here's my list, please feel free to tell me what an idiot I am. Also, try to guess who I'll have directing it (the answer will be given in the comments section at an arbitrary time interval later).

Michael Valentine Smith: Johnny Depp (He's already proven he can be the meek withdrawn Mike from the early stages of the book, and the over the top cult-figure from the later stages... and I think this guy was raised by aliens anyway.)
Jubal Harshaw: Patrick Stewart (come on, this one is inevitable)
Gillian Boardman: Reese Witherspoon (must look like a more wholesome version of Dawn Ardent)
Dawn Ardent: Heather Graham (must look like a trashier version of Gillian Boardman)
Ben Caxton: Aaron Eckhart (Got more money? Try Edward Norton.)
Captain van Tromp: Christopher Walken (He, he, he.)
Dr. Mahmoud: Alexander Siddig (Again, another Star Trek alum who's perfect)
Dr. Sven Nelson: Karl Urban (random pick here)
Secretary-General Joseph Douglas: Kurtwood Smith (For Star Trek fans, the big news conference would have to feature Douglas saying, “This president is not above the law”)
Anne: Nichole Kidman (the blonde version... needs a certain ice-princessness)
Miriam: Kristin Davis (make Miriam the brunette, I think she'd have great chemistry with Sid... he's already dating Kim Cattrall)
Dorcas: Diane Lane (make Dorcas the redhead)
Larry: Alan Tudyk
Duke: David Morse
Patricia Paiwonski: Jamie Lee Curtis
The “Reverend” Foster/Foster’s Ghost: Malcolm McDowell
Bishop Digby/Digby’s Ghost: Nathan Fillion
Senator Tom Boone: Robert Duvall (Maybe looking too much like Kurtwood Smith might be a problem)

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