Joel Edgerton in Talks for Ridley Scott’s ‘Exodus’, Starring Christian Bale as Moses

Published 2 years ago by , Updated August 14th, 2013 at 12:17 am,

joel edgerton jane got gun Joel Edgerton in Talks for Ridley Scotts Exodus, Starring Christian Bale as Moses

For a while there, 20th Century Fox and Warner Bros. had another battle of the copycat movies on their hands, where it concerned the studios’ dual Moses films in development. Over the past couple years, we’d been hearing that WB had its eyes on Steven Spielberg to direct a new blockbuster centered around the Biblical figure, titled Gods and Kings – described as a Braveheart-esque epic take on the story – but the filmmaker officially passed on the project earlier this year, only for Oscar-winner Ang Lee’s name to quickly enter the conversation as a possible replacement director (Lee has since moved on to different pastures).

Unfortunately for WB’s Moses flick, Fox’s similar religious project Exodus started to gain traction around the same time that Spielberg formally said no to Gods and Kings. The former had been developing for a while under Ridley Scott’s supervision, before it was given an official late 2014 release date just under three months ago (at the time of writing this).

Deadline is reporting that Joel Edgerton has entered negotiations to play the Egyptian pharaoh Ramses in the Scott-directed Exodus, with Christian Bale lined up to portray the prophet Moses – Ramses’ adopted brother, for those who are a little rusty on their Bible studies. Skipping over the discussion about whether or not it’s appropriate for the Australian Edgerton to play Ramses: the actor is very much in his prime right now, having impressed with one performance after another from such movies as Animal Kingdom, Warrior, Zero Dark Thirty and The Great Gatsby – which is to say, he’s a fine choice, skill-wise, to face off against the heavy-hitting Bale as Moses in Scott’s new cinematic venture into the ancient world.

Darren Aronofsky sought to direct Moses Joel Edgerton in Talks for Ridley Scotts Exodus, Starring Christian Bale as Moses

Charlton Heston as Moses in ‘The Ten Commandments’

When Scott first started to talk about Exodus – back before the project’s official titled has even been revealed – he indicated that the focus of the film will not be on “the big stuff that everybody knows” (see: the elements of the Moses story that were highlighted in both of Cecil B. DeMille’s The Ten Commandments films). Instead, Scott admitted that he was more interested in smaller and more personal details, such as Moses’ relationship with Ramses – which, itself, was given more attention in DreamWorks’ animated musical iteration of the story, The Prince of Egypt (released back in 1998).

A character-driven retelling of the Moses story featuring Bale and Edgerton as the leads – with Scott directing a revised script draft penned by Oscar-winner Steve Zaillian (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) – sounds like a project that could be both visually breathtaking and dramatically engaging. On the other hand, nowadays Scott’s films tend to split people to some varying degree, be it his take on Robin Hood (starring Russell Crowe) or the highly-divisive Alien spinoff Prometheus – and that may happen again later this year, when Scott releases the Cormac McCarthy-scripted crime drama/thriller The Counselor.

Are you interested in Exodus based on the casting and details revealed so far – or would you rather just stay home and re-watch The Ten Commandments/Prince of Egypt instead?


Exodus will part the Red Sea in U.S. theaters on December 12th, 2014.

Source: Deadline

Follow Sandy Schaefer on Twitter @feynmanguy
TAGS: Exodus
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  1. I would like to see it!

  2. looooooooooooooolllll i love Edgerton i really do.. but SERIOUSLY? is hollywood still doing this kind of trash?

    hows a lily white australian sposed to play rameses an egyptian pharoah in a time before arabs or romans invaded africa? lmfao.. no really, im dying to hear it -_-

    • Charlton Heston and Yul Brynner were whites who played Moses and Rameses just find. It’s a Biblical Fantasy Epic, suspend your disbelief.

      • I could take yul Brynner as a Ramses

      • DeMille’s 10 Commandments with Heston and Brenner could not have been better cast, not to mention numerous other excellent actresses and actors in the film…one of the best epic flicks ever made. I would think the flick could be cut some slack. And with the names attached to this Exodus movie (Scott, Zaillian, Edgerton, Bale), I would think it might have a decent fighting chance…surely there is someone the haters can find to like in the line-up?

        • I think Idris Elba should’ve been Ramses…and they should’ve gotten someone like a Colin Kaepernick to be Moses. The Ten Commandments is one of my ALLTIME favorite movies, love it! But they get a pass, because they filmed during Jim Crow…there’s no need for such sweeping inaccuracies these days…and who will be Moses’ black wife, Britney Spears or Jane Fonda?!? Honestly. I will not go see this film. I still have my Ten Commandments…it’s time for something new!

          Not just this film, but Noah will be Russell Crowe and Anthony Hopkins will be Methuselah. Noah’s black son will be played by two actors…young Ham is white and so is adult Ham. This is a direct slap in the face of blacks and history and for Christians. Just pathetic!

    • Yes, Wesley, I’m afraid Hollywood IS still doing this, even though we now know archeologically that Ramses, Sheba, and many other Biblical characters were black. They’re still stuck in the 50s.

      • Black or Arabic?

      • We’re also pretty sure from archeological evidence that Moses probably wasn’t real and that Exodus at this point doesn’t look to have actually happened at all…so I guess when adapting something biblical it really doesn’t matter about realism.

  3. Prometheus Sequel and Blade Runner Sequel first please Ridders

    • From everything I’ve read, they are next, just after ‘Exodus’. A script is being worked on and actor’s have been approached for ‘Paradise’ (rumored title to ‘Prometheus’ sequel).

  4. Is this a remake of The Ten Commandments?

  5. Really?… White Caucasian pharoah???.. Really soooo no historical accuracy at all???

    • You’d call a tale in the Bible historically accurate?

      • There are actually many parts of the Bible that are absolutely historically accurate you just are so caught up in your bashing of religion you don’t even research what you are trying to argue.

        • Hey, Bob. Do you believe the purpose of putting the bible together was for religion as much as it was for polictical control?

      • Absolutely. Especially the part where Jesus was nailed to a cross, shed His blood for each and every one of us, so that we could be saved from our sins by grace (a free gift) and not by works or laws.

        There’s more. I refer you to the New Testament. Check it out and may God bless each and every one of you.

        As for the movie…it could be an interesting angle to explore. As long as the story isn’t twisted into something that doesn’t glorify God.

        Contrary to the belief of many, the story isn’t fiction. Everyone will know this one day. I am not saying people cannot offer their interpretation of these stories. They obviously can and do. I am also not accusing Ridley Scott of anything…yet. He may produce the best Biblical movie ever made. Contrary to what many here might be thinking, I have an open mind about it. At least until he gives me reason not to.

        I actually hope it is good because I have been a Scott fan for some time for all the usual reasons many of you are. Just because I am Christian doesn’t mean I don’t love science fiction. And no, the Bible is not science fiction. Or fantasy.

        If I had not discovered sf at a very early age, I would not be the reader I am today. Of anything. Possibly even the Bible.

        I love science fiction because it gives me a superficial escape from the trials and tribulations of the real world. Excitement and adventure and a wishful thought of what the world could be like if time stands long enough. But the Bible gives me a foundation to stand on to face the real world as it is and what it will really become. And I know it will never fail me as long as I am faithful and obedient to its author.

        Thank you to anyone who stuck with this till this point. Thanks for indulging my “rant”.

      • and you wouldent? the bible is accurate as a historical record. You would be hard pressed to find evidence against its placement of events throughout history.

      • aside from the allegorical creationism/revelationism aspects most of the bible IS historical.. &whats the bible got to do with ACTUAL HISTORY anyway

        SCIENCE.. tells us ramses was a BLACK man.. not a mixed arab.. slightly tanned guy but BLACK (technically bronzebut whatever) its bad enough blacks get cropped out of ww2 war epics &every classic western in existence.. but this takes the cake

      • @Jon – Actually, Exodus refers to the Israelites escaping the bondage of the Egyptians. That is a historical fact. Now whether you believe God parted the Red Sea or not is up to you but the enslavement, plagues and exodus are all documented outside of the Bible.


      • At the very least, for all the non-believers…Egypt is in Africa…and the ancients are black. Personally, your saying the Bible is a tale is a tale.

    • Who d’ya want, Will Smith?

      • yeah, because will smith is the only black actor out there, right? There are a lot of actors who could play moses. Heres a few.-

        Idris Elba
        Jamie Foxx
        Omar Sy
        Chiwetel Ejiofor

        These are just off the top of my head.
        There’s also a lot of young unexplored talent out there.
        So, yes a black guy should have played Moses. God knows how many acting gigs there actually are for black people.
        Over a century after slavery and they still get screwed.

        • +1000

          but will smith would actually be a good bet… IF he could bring his seven pounds, i am legend or pursuit of happyness game to the table.. but hes chasing a hit right now after the ABYSMAL AfterBirth..
          &is too high profile for this kind of project anyway.. he’d (read: media circus) most likely distract from what could be an otherwise hefty performance

        • Even if Moses existed he wasn’t black. He was of Middle Eastern heritage.

          • He passed for black in the House of Pharaoh. In the Bible it was said at Jacob’s funeral procession folks couldn’t tell the Hebrews from the Egyptians. Hebrews didn’t look like the European ones we liken them to today. The ones today are European…they are not from Canaan. Gosh it’s a long story, but maybe one day if Hollywood would tell it right instead of always putting actors that don’t look like people from that part of the world on screen, people might have a light bulb moment, and go “Ah hah”! It’s hard to do when we keep getting fed people like Edgerton and Bale types. I have nothing against them, but I’m just saying, can someone please follow the descriptions in the Bible, at the very least! That’s all. By the way, Moses did have black ancestors in his blood, maybe that’s how he passed as an Egyptian. Joseph’s wife was black, an Egyptian, Asenath.

        • Why not a Dane, Welshman, Scot, or Englishman? I have all four bloodlines in me, and all of them have been oppressed (and yes, been oppressors at times) throughout history at one time or another. There are more “minorities”, depending on when and where you look, than just blscks,Native Americans, Lations, Asians. mThere have been more slaves than just blacks as well: Greeks, Asians, South/Central Americans as far back as the Mayans and before…why does everyone have to yell how the blacks got screwed because of slavery, so now they are entitled to stomp on everyone else (don’t get me wrong: black slavery was a sad sick period in our history as a civilized nation; I am just saying they are not exclusive). Anyways, that doees not have much to do with who plays Moses. But I wonder how everyone yelling “blacks should conquer the world, and are more entitled than anyone else, or else!” would feel when a white guy plays Black Panther, Malcolm X, Luke Cage, Martin Luther King, or Michael Jackson? Just sayin’, cuz even tho I am a dreaded white guy, I am probably the first guy who would have fought against slavery for the North in the Civil War (in case you are wondering), and am probably (despite being a dreaded Conservative Republican on most things) the l east biased guy you could ever meet as far as ethnic race goes. I am not knocking black actors, as I have seen some truly wonderful ones out there, and am sure there are many more I am not acquainted with who probably could do the part. It’s just that fist in the air liberals thinking they have statements to ram down everyone else’s throats and something to prove prove to me only their ignorence and bias themselves.

        • I think Idris Elba should’ve been Ramses for sure! He might not be an actor, but Colin Kaepernick looks like the perfect Moses to pass for Egyptian right under Pharaoh’s nose…if they needed someone with light eyes, I’m for James Earl Jones as old Pharaoh! His voice, his command is excellent! Tika Sumpter has the body type of an Egyptian, she could be an excellent princess/queen! Someone really dropped the ball on this casting. It is a disaster.

  6. Edgerton is a great actor, and it’ll be interesting to see him play an Egyptian, seeing that he does not look Egyptian at all.

    Either way, I love Ridley Scott and Christian Bale, and Edgerton is one of my favorite up and coming actors, so I’m excited to see this flick.

  7. Big names for Exodus. While there is no topping Cecil B. DeMille, Charleton Heston and Yul Brenner in 10 Commandmnents, if Ridley Scott is directing Exodus, I’m in, and will give it a watch. Who knows, actually could be good.

  8. Charlton Heston played a Mexican.

    • And not very convincingly :)

  9. How do we know “Ramses” was the pharaoh at the time of the exodus?

    • thats an older belief…I think most archeologists & biblical scholars would tell you Thutmose 2 or 3 were prob the pharaohs at the time of the exodus.

  10. so hollywood is still white washing history….no surprise there. find the whitest guy you can find and make us believe he is a dark skinned north african pharoah….ridiculous.

    • Seems like an awful lot of people out there want to blackwash history as well…just sayin’….

      • You’re defending the indefensible. Ramses has been exhumed, DNA tested and he was BLACK. This is an ACTUAL HISTORICAL figure. it’s like casting Alfre Woodard as Mary Queen of Scots.
        Moses can be cast according to interpretation, but Ramses should NOT. He was black, and this is WRONG.

        • The rulers of Egypt were NOT black, but their slaves were. But hey, what do the facts really matter anyway?

          • I’ve read many asinine and truly monumentally stupid things before but your comment is at the top of the pile. And looking at your name, it reveals why. Apparently fact matter not at all to you.

      • Well said.

    • I think it’s blatantly disrespectful.

  11. Thutmose the second 1492-1479 BC or
    Thutmose the third 1479/1458-1425 BC are believed to be the Pharaohs of the exodus….not Ramses or Se ti as portrayed in the 10 commandments movie with Charleston Heston.

  12. Sounds interesting and I’ll see pretty much anything with Christian Bale in it. As far as casting Edgerton as Ramses…..Id rather have a good actor than someone who “looks the part” …….anyone see tropic thunder? they can make a white guy look like not a white guy.

    • you know, thats one of the dumbest &possibly (whether you realise it or not) most casually racist statements of all screenrant time..
      what youre basically insinuating is that no mixed black or even legimately egyptian auteur would have the talent to play the role.

      • You’re suggesting blacking up??? Seriously?

  13. Moses: i can’t take it, i can’t help those people, i can’t help myself =(
    God : why do we fall, Moses?
    *water made a path*
    Moses: we both looked into darkness
    *Ramses looks at the stuff in Moses’ hand*
    Moses: but when darkness looked at us, you blinked.
    *waves the stuff and ocean start collapsing*

  14. so this is the ae we now (still) live in..
    where a derivative FICTIONAL character (lets say spiderman) CANNOT be depicted by a person divergent racial origin…

    but HISTORICAL/BIBLICAL characters who everyone from scientists to theologians &historians KNOW belong to a certain specific race of ppl are just being casually sideswiped &its ok “as long as the right actor gets the role”???

    lol the self serving racial hypocrisy at work here is astounding.. but not exactly surprising.

  15. Is Bale going to use a lispy Moses voice?

    “… but I am shlow of shpeech and shlow of tongue!”

    [hides from lightning and Bale fans]

    • Haha! Good one!

    • Moses’ did not have a problem with speech…think about it…he was raised in the House of Pharaoh. The Egyptian language was his mother tongue. When he spoke in Egypt people stopped and listened. He was mighty in words and deeds. He ran into issues (language and trust) when he tried to step up and lead the Hebrews! They probably thought it was a trap…that’s where his brother and translator, Aaron came in. They knew him…Aaron spoke fluent Egyptian, cause he had to work in close proximity with Egyptians and wasn’t totally just in Goshen with other Hebrews. But Aaron wasn’t God’s chosen one. Moses’ Hebrew was like when you try to learn a first semester of Spanish in high school or something, so he needed help!

  16. Just out of curiousity, I wonder how many people out there have read the Bible, cover to cover? (I have…anyone wondering what denomination I am, it is Evangelical Lutheran Church In America, the branch that is derived from a Scandanavian background). I also have read several biographies of Martin Luther and other founders of the Protestant Reformation, as well as earlier directions the church and religion has followed. I also read a prodigious amount of history books…gobble ’em up like the proverbial housewife devouring harlequin romances. Any of you read history for knowlage or leisure? Not criticizing, trying to be negative, or waving scholarship around at all…I think everyone can derive pleasure from the pursuit of knowlage, and urge all of you to read, study, discover….I am just kinda curious, is all.

    In the meantime, let’s all just kick back, let ’em make the movie how they see fit, and hopefully we will all enjoy a pleasurable viewing experience.

    • I have read the Bible cover to cover, several times.
      The mummy of Ramses has been exhumed and was earthy brown in skin tone. Chritian Bale could possibly appear dark enough to have been raised in the Pharaoh’s household with a deep enough tan, but Joel Edgerton playing black is ridiculous.
      Only a bigot or a fool could enjoy the gross miscasting of an actual real Egyptian king.
      They are welcome to make the movie as they see fit, but it better have a low budget, cos it’s going to flop.
      And the only person I sympathise with is Christian Bale. The skin colour of Moses can be slightly debated in how dark it was, but Ramses was black.

      • Moses family was descended from Canaan. (the country) That’s how he passed under the noses of Egyptians. During Jacob’s funeral, it was noted folks couldn’t tell the difference between the Hebrews and Egyptians. It’s just that these days we (me included) tend to think of someone like Barbara Streisand or Adam Sandler as Jewish/Hebrew. But we’re talking ancient times. Many Hebrews were black from black lands. And I’m not saying they didn’t mix, all races mix, but there was a solid chunk of blackness there. We’re just “conditioned” to what we see on tv now. Canaan was Ham’s son, the one who was actually cursed…as his land, Canaan was not to be his! The Table of Nations is an excellent source to figure out who is what.

  17. Yeah a movie where all the bad guys are black, and the good guys are all white.

    Yeah the PC police would love that!

    • I think you’ll find the PC police would rather the Ramses be black and Moses Olive skinned at minimum, in keeping with REALITY.

  18. I was actually reading Exodus recently. God kept telling Moses to go to Pharoh to ask for freedom and then promise some kind of plague or disaster is Pharoh didn’t comply. But he also kept saying that he’s harden the heart of Pharoh so he’d refuse. He did this like a dozen times (really boring and redundant storywise, by the way). It comes off as just a big mess-around on God’s part.

  19. There is no way this story could be depicted accurately without an oral understanding of the Biblical text.
    Reading the bible and understanding it from a literal standpoint just cant work.

    There are so many nuances and gaps that fill in the exodus story and all other biblical writings that are left out.

    In order to do this right you will have to go to other sources such a medrash and older rabbinic sources to hash out the details simply because its these sources that have poured over the biblical canon for centuries more than any other group of people.

    This is the only way it could be done right.