Alexander Skarsgård & Samuel L. Jackson Wanted for ‘Tarzan’

Published 1 year ago by , Updated March 9th, 2013 at 2:03 pm,

alexander skarsgard tarzan Alexander Skarsgård & Samuel L. Jackson Wanted for Tarzan

Warner Bros. has been looking to resurrect the live-action Tarzan movie franchise for a couple years now, and even had two different scripts in development at one point. A few months after that initial report broke, it seemed the studio was going to move forward with the draft penned by Craig Brewer (Hustle & Flow, Black Snake Moan), who would also be directing.

However, Brewer’s take on author Edgar Rice Burroughs’ iconic ‘ape-man’ ended up falling by the wayside. Directing duties have since been reassigned to David Yates (the director of the final four Harry Potter films), and just last week we discovered that he had officially begun the search for a suitable candidate to portray the new Tarzan.

Four stud actors were previously mentioned as prospectives in the running for Yates’ Tarzan adaptation: Alexander Skarsgård (True Blood), Charlie Hunnam (Sons of Anarchy), Henry Cavill (Immortals), and Tom Hardy (The Dark Knight Rises). Skarsgård did seem like the best choice for a handful of reasons, including:

  1. He possesses the necessary physical build (he’s 6’4”) and screen presence.
  2. He’s on the lookout for a breakout role such as this, whereas Hunnam already has a part in Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim, Cavill is playing Superman in Warner Bros.’ Man of Steel, and Hardy remains as in-demand as ever (case in point: we just learned today that he’s starring in Ubisoft’s Splinter Cell movie).

Hence, it’s not surprising to learn that Skarsgård is indeed Yates’ first choice for the film. Variety reports that he has yet to receive a formal offer and nothing has been finalized at this stage, but that a decision is expected before the year’s end (well-ahead of a planned Summer 2013 production start date).

tarzan david yates gary ross Alexander Skarsgård & Samuel L. Jackson Wanted for Tarzan

The script for Yates’ Tarzan was written by Adam Cozad (the Jack Ryan reboot), who is reported to have drawn from earlier drafts penned by the likes of Cormac and Marianne Wibberley (the National Treasure movies) and John August (who worked with the Wibberleys on the script for Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle). Here is a description of the plot setup from Cozad’s draft:

Years after he’s re-assimilated into society, [John Clayton III, a.k.a. Tarzan] is asked by Queen Victoria to investigate the goings-on in the Congo. Tarzan teams with an ex-mercenary named George Washington Williams to save the Congo from a fierce warlord who controls a massive diamond mine.

Variety also reports that Samuel L. Jackson is currently being eyed for the role of Williams, a character described as “a Civil War veteran eager to redeem himself for his part in the massacre of Native Americans.” SLJ has recently been taking a break from playing Nick Fury in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to work on the RoboCop and Oldboy remakes, but he’ll return to duty as the head of S.H.I.E.L.D. next year (when shooting starts on Captain America: The Winter Soldier).

Does this new version of Tarzan sound appealing to you so far? Let us know in the comments section.

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Source: Variety

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  1. Sam Jackson? ‘Get this motherfunkin ape man out this motherfunkin jungle!’

    • That would single-handedly win it Picture of the Year, in my book.

  2. Sam Jackson should be tarzan. haha.

    • LOL!!

  3. This Tarzan sounds a bit different than the original but it still sounds pretty interesting, it funny I ne er pictured Sam Jackson in a Tarzan movie but that just made my day lol.

  4. I can already see it now:

    “I’m sick of these mothereffing apes in this mothereffing jungle!”

  5. So this is a civilized Tarzan teaming up with a Black Civil War vet going to investigate some monkey business (terrible pun). They should have just combined this with the new Lone Ranger movie and have all four characters team up to fight a talking gorillas who know Kung-Fu. And there would be vampires….

    • LOL!!!!! That would be perfect!!!

  6. OMG I am so excited, I have read all the Tarzan books… wait… Tarzan after he is assimilated into society… but he never was, he went back to the Jungle with Jane… this doesn’t sound anything like Tarzan. Oh… its based on a script by the guy who wrote a sequel to Charlies Angels… must be awesome.

  7. I have a bad feeling about this……………

  8. Skarsgard? Physical build for Tarzan? Well, personally I find him too lanky (proportionally) and too tall for the part. Will look rather clumsy and unconvincing swinging from lianas, I think. Tarzan is an agile character- and for that you need to have a perfect center of gravity and balance which doesn’t usually suggest very tall people. But for killer look, I score Skarsgard a perfect ten… which is essential in Tarzan. I’d have used that Conan actor again here.

  9. Did’nt they already make this movie? was’nt it called the RUNDOWN with Dwayne “the rock” Johnson? was I the only one thinking that when I read the synopsis?

  10. Wasn’t Greystroke: the Legend of Tarzan enough? Why not take a chance and do other pulp heroes? The Shadow, Doc Savage, The Avenger, etc. Update them create new series, the whole king of the Jungle thing is risky either it offends or is done so poorly its not even funny !

  11. Alexander is the wrong guy.!

    If they use this fellow the movie will flop. He does not have the physique as desribed in the books. The reason CONAN succeded is because ARNOLD had the body as described in the HOWARD books. Arnold broughtv his body charisma and acting ability to the part and made it a success.

    I suggest ROLAND KICKINGER ,he has the body and will follow Arnolds example. The physique needs to be believable.

  12. As much as I agree with you that Skarsgaard doesn’t have the right physique for Tarzan, I think Arnold’s muscular physique for Conan would be a tad too much and too artificial for Tarzan. That’s too much bulk for a nimble, liana-swinging man too carry across the jungle. Why, the branches would snap as he lands on them! Tarzan is just a survivor- any muscles on him should look natural and not sculpted IMO.

  13. I think Mr. Skarsgard would be a great Tarzan and i would watch it. Would prefer a remake of the original story though. I loved Greystoke.