Sharlto Copley started out as an actor in the role of "Sniper" in Neil Blomkamp's short film Alive in Joburg. The director went on to cast Copley in the feature-length version of that short, a little film by the name of District 9 (don't know if you've heard of it). Copley was fantastic in that role and certainly proved himself as not just a serious actor but a movie star, too.
We've already seen evidence that Copley is going places as he was cast as "Howling Mad" Murdock in the upcoming A-Team movie, a role which, judging by the trailers, he looks to have nailed. But now we learn that scoring leading roles isn't just a two-time deal for the South African actor, as we're hearing word that he'll be joining a new alien film over at Dreamworks.
Heat Vision is reporting that Copley is currently in talks to join I Am Number Four, the alien teen flick being directed by D.J. Caruso (Eagle Eye) and produced by Michael Bay and Steven Spielberg (talk about bringing out the big guns!). We last reported on the project a couple of weeks ago when it got an official release date of February 18th, 2011.
Here's the plot outline for I Am Number Four, just to bring you in the loop if you're not already:
The film is about nine earthbound aliens who escaped their planet just before it was annihilated by a rival species. Hiding out on Earth, disguised as a human teenager in high school, the title character discovers that he is being hunted by the enemy that destroyed his planet.
As fellow Screen Rant writer Mike Eisenberg said, that plot sounds like District 9-meets-Transformers (meets Teen Wolf :P ). It also struck me as being kind of similar to 9, the animated film about living rag dolls fighting for survival (what's with the sudden obsession with the number nine, Hollywood?) I don't really think those comparisons are a bad thing, do you?
The only casting we've been aware of up until now is Alex Pettyfer (Stormbreaker), who will play the lead teen alien in the movie. Copley is set to play, "a man who hailed from the alien world's serving class but now is the title character's adult guardian and mentor."
I Am Number Four is being adapted from an upcoming six-part book series being published by HarperCollins Children's Books in the fall of this year. Smallville writers Al Gough and Miles Millar adapted the screenplay.
I was intrigued by the plot for I Am Number Four when we first heard of Michael Bay's attachment and am still curious to see if the film works onscreen. Either way, I'm glad to see Copley getting his due and snagging big roles in Hollywood. Anyone who saw District 9 will know he has both presence and legitimate acting chops. I hope he goes on to snag more and more roles that eventually make him a household name.
Are you glad to see Sharlto Copley add another big role to his resume? What do you make of the plot of I Am Number Four?
I Am Number Four is currently in pre-production and will open in theaters on February 18th, 2011.
Source: Heat Vision