It turns out that Leonardo DiCaprio’s J. Edgar Hoover won’t be the only one competing for the affections of Armie Hammer onscreen. The Social Network star is now signed on to portray Prince Andrew Alcott (a.k.a. Prince Charming) in director Tarsem Singh’s The Brothers Grimm: Snow White.
Hammer joins Julia Roberts as an official cast member onboard for the first (and likely most macabre) of three Snow White films that will hit theaters over the next couple of years, beating out both Universal’s Snow White and the Huntsman and Disney’s Snow and the Seven.
Deadline is also reporting that Oscar-nominee Saoirse Ronan is in discussions for the titular role of Snow White, but that nothing is officially settled at this point. Pre-production is already well underway and filming is scheduled to begin in May, so either Ronan or another actress should soon sign on for the lead role in the fairy tale retold.
On that note, here’s an official description of the project:
Relativity’s ‘Snow White’, a retelling of one of the most beloved fables of all time, will eschew the traditional story in favor of a more modern tale full of comedy and adventure. After her evil stepmother (Roberts) kills her father and destroys her kingdom, Snow White bands together with a gang of seven quarrelsome dwarfs to reclaim what is rightly hers.
Ronan will get to show off her action chops in next month’s Hanna, a film that also revolves around a young female warrior – albeit, one who’s been trained for combat since birth. While Snow White obviously won’t be quite so astute in the art of combat, it sounds as though the princess will be more of an empowered figure who plays an active role in determining her fate in Singh’s film. Someone like Ronan would be an excellent fit for that type of modernized take on the famed princess.
Kristen Stewart remains set to portray the character in Snow White and the Huntsman, which also aims to refashion the Grimm Brothers’ story as a tale of survival in which a young woman must fight for her birthright. Credit (or blame) can go to last year’s box office smash, Alice in Wonderland, for encouraging studios to redesign female-centric classic literature in a more contemporary light.
It’s the Brothers Grimm pic that’s of more interest to me personally, since Singh has an often surreal visual style that resembles the twisted artistic sensibility of Alice director Tim Burton at times. Singh has not yet worked on a mainstream big-budget project, so it’s possible his Snow White flick will follow in the footsteps of this fall’s The Three Musketeers and be a period adventure with more of a mainstream aesthetic – less that of Singh’s The Cell.
None of the upcoming Snow White movies look to retell the fable in a more traditional manner, along the lines of Disney’s classically animated feature – and that’s probably for the best, since it’d be all but impossible to improve on an undisputed masterpiece like that, for most moviegoers.
We’ll find out whether or not a modernized version of the fairy tale works when The Brothers Grimm: Snow White arrives in regular and 3D theaters on June 29th, 2012.