Is He The Only Actor Right For Tarantino's Black Western?

by Sergio
May 1, 2011 4:09 AM
101 Comments
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So in case you haven't heard, that little item I wrote yesterday morning regarding the plot details for Quentin Tarantino's black western Django Unchained, caused quite a buzz throughout the blogosphere all day. I had no idea it would cause such a fuss. I didn't know that the details of the film were being kept in secret... well that is until I blew the whole thing. We're been flooded with e-mails from insiders asking us how did we knew about it? Shortly afterward, both the William Morris Agency and The Weinstein Company confirmed that it was all true. That's just like me to start something. Ain't I a stinker?

But I did bring up the question of who would play the lead in Tarantino's film, that of an ex-slave out to save his wife (who's still being held in slavery), and getting revenge on slave holders? Many of you have and still are posting your suggestions. Both Chiwetel Ejiofor and Anthony Mackie seem to be popular choices. But honestly I see neither of them in the role.

Both are fine actors - no question about that; that Ejiofor always seems to have a rather sensitive and, dare I say it, too intellectual persona. Mackie, I'm sorry, doesn't have that hard, masculine weight required for the role.

Some have suggested Michael Jai White but I find his masculinity bordering on satirical. Maybe because he was simply too good in Black Dynamite. And someone suggested Forest Whitaker... are you kidding?

That leaves us with our main man Idris Elba. And to be honest, I can't think of anyone else for the role. (Unless they find an unknown who blows Elba out of the water). But regrading Elba, he's talented (just see him in the TV detective series Luther that was on BBC America if you don't believe me); he's definitely got presence (when Idris is on the screen, he's ON the screen); he's got that hardcore masculine thing going for him, and you just know he could be one mean badass.

Also, the guy is simply long overdue for a great lead film role that will propel him to the top. Luther, unfortunately, wasn't seen by enough people, and his lead roles in Daddy Little Girls or Obsessed didn't do him any favors. And most importantly, playing the lead in Django would be such sweet justice for being replaced by Tyler Perry in that Alex Cross film project. Actually Elba left the project when the original director David Twohy bolted from it; but still the idea of TP replacing Elba in an acting role that practically everyone, even his fans, agree is terribly unsuited for, is... is... I'm sorry; it's just too horrible to think about it.

So my vote is for Idris. Anyone else agree?

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101 Comments

  • Lee | July 29, 2011 7:03 AMReply

    ABSOLUTELY IDRIS ELBA IS PERFECT!!!
    One of the top 5 living actors in the world...

    -Luther (astonishing performance/persona.. watch BBC cancel it.. heck, with 6 eps for Season 1 and 4 eps for Season 2, nothing suprises me anymore.. the higher the quality, goodness, talent, the faster it's eliminated... welcome to the brain defect society)...
    -The Reaping 2007
    -RockNRolla

    QT better cast him and make it a LOCK...

  • AMJ | June 16, 2011 1:32 AMReply

    What about Gbenga Akinnagbe?

  • RideBlackCowboyBrett1953 | May 26, 2011 11:35 AMReply

    Dudes and dudettes,I AM NOT REGGIE DORSEY!!!
    FOR ONE THING,I HAVE NEVER visited Texas,LET LONE DWELT THERE!!! I'm just saying that,pushing 60,I'm about SIX ORDERS OF MAGNITUDE HANDSOMER THAN OL' REGINALD T.!!!

  • RideBlackCowboyBrett1953 | May 24, 2011 1:04 AMReply

    Actuallly,YOURS TULY would be Tarantino's best choice for this role,because thoghu 57-58 July 6-mea-
    ning NO DISRESPECT WHATEVER TO THE DUDE,who's an inarguably EXCELLENT actor and,a lot of the ladies believe,QUTIE THE HUNK,I'm regar-
    ded MUCH HANDSOMER THAN IDRIS ELBA,plus I'm said to look AND LAY IT DOWN like a handsome,LIBIDINOUS black cowboy!!!

  • warren drummond | May 7, 2011 7:27 AMReply

    Who ever is in Reggie Dorsey's fan club, STOP!!!!! He's TOO OLD to play a neophyte and he is NOT A NAME. Push for him to get a part or to a technical advisor, but it's kind of embarrassing that you keep writing the man in under different names. Yes, he he's "real" in experience, but an unknown in his 50's isn't happening.

  • warren drummond | May 7, 2011 7:27 AMReply

    Who ever is in Reggie Dorsey's fan club, STOP!!!!! He's TOO OLD to play a neophyte and he is NOT A NAME. Push for him to get a part or to a technical advisor, but it's kind of embarrassing that you keep writing the man in under different names. Yes, he he's "real" in experience, but an unknown in his 50's isn't happening.

  • doctor fart | May 6, 2011 8:06 AMReply

    this reginald dorsey guy is a good 30 years too old for the roll and so the two of you who are spamming this board with the same message under different names - use your head. it's not going to happen.

  • allan | May 5, 2011 12:06 PMReply

    What about Soueymane Sy Savane from GOODBYE SOLO? I think he'd be perfect!

  • bridgetbarnett74@yahoo.com | May 5, 2011 2:50 AMReply

    For those of you who are questioning Reginald T. Dorsey's ability and his following, here is his biography for review.

    If you don't know, you better "ask somebody"!!!!!

    Brie!

    Reginald was born and raised in Dallas, Texas until he was 10 years old. His family then moved to San Jose, California where he was an outstanding student and High School athlete, excelling in football and track. However, the quest for him to act proved to be more powerful though than his athletic dreams. After attending an open call with his mother back in Dallas for extra work in the film "Book Of Numbers," Filmmaker Raymond St.Jacques spotted the young 13 year old and wrote a lead part for him in the film. The rest is history as they say and at 16 years old he left home for Hollywood to pursue his calling as an actor and filmmaker.

    Now a veteran in the film and t.v. business his respect and passion for his craft is even greater after many years of sacrifice and dedication. His credits are extensive, "MIRACLE OF THE HEART; A BOYS TOWN STORY," "21 JUMP ST.," "BOOKER," "RETURN TO LONESOME DOVE," Critically Acclaimed "SOUTH CENTRAL," "THE CHEROKEE KID" and The Award Winning "KINGS OF THE EVENING," which he also produced are just a few from his body of work.

    A true "Texas Cowboy" his whole life, Reginald's other passions are raising horses, competing in rodeos, most notably The Bill Pickett Invitational and others where he has won Championships in Team Roping and Team Penning.

    His work with children and touching peoples lives in a meaningful way continues to be a source of inspiration for him as an artist and as a man, giving all the glory to God for his many blessings.

  • Laurel | May 4, 2011 5:29 AMReply

    Reginald T. Dorsey has my vote! He is the complete package. He is a for real Black Cowboy, and an excellent actor. He is serious eye candy, youthful and rugged.I know he would be a serious draw for very broad and diverse audience.

  • Jug | May 4, 2011 4:26 AMReply

    This is cool tho. Who else is out there?

  • Jug | May 4, 2011 4:25 AMReply

    @misha-Indeed LOL

    And I can honestly see what you're saying about Omari & Idris. I think it's the weight. You drop a couple of pounds you look healthier & younger, just ask Anthony Anderson. LMAO And after a clean shave, every black man looks like he could be sharecroppin' :-P

    Above all, I think the back & forth is pretty much proof positive why the same folks get role after role, we (casting people, fans, etc) just need to think about it. There are other folks than Idris... And Reginald T Dorsey LOL (I couldn't resist)

    Incidentally, I'm watching Terrence Howard on L&O:LA right now & he is killin' it (now) as a high powered attorney :-D

  • misha | May 4, 2011 3:36 AMReply

    Well, looks like we'll just have to disagree on all points. LOL Loved Ealy on the Good Wife...thought he was very natural in the role (though again, the writing left much to be desired imo). And again, I like Omari but I don't think he reads younger than Idris and I can't imagine him in this particular role. Don't watch True Blood so I can't speak to Nelsan Ellis' acting skills but based on appearance...not seeing it.

  • Jug | May 4, 2011 2:32 AMReply

    @misha-Oh no, the writing was fine enuff. The problem is Ealy was not comfortable in his skin as an upscale attorney. Just because he "looked" like he was an attorney, doesn't mean he was good. Imagine how a person looks when they are trying on a new suit or dress at the tailor and they pose in that three-sided mirror around them. That was his acting, he was always conscious of his character-posing, playing "attorney" instead of a real person who happens to be an attorney.

    And with Omari, yeah he can do the same roles as Idris, but on camera I think he reads a bit younger than Idris, and like I said before, age and size are gonna be factors.

    But hey, my vote is still for Nelsan Ellis. There's a comedic factor & impetuous nature to Django & neither of those things I'd ascribe to Idris off top. Whoever said Marlon Wayans may be onto somethin' too

  • misha | May 4, 2011 1:32 AMReply

    LOL Sounds like you have more of a problem with the writing (which was lacking imo) than with than Ealy himself. Either way, I was a fan of the "super attorney." But the show is starting to leave me cold, as it's "diversity tactics" are a little too problematic for me.

    I see you've named yet another guy who I think is in the same category as Idris. Big fan of Omari but if anybody has a contemporary look, he does for sure.

  • Jug | May 4, 2011 1:15 AMReply

    Quietly, a reeeal darkhorse....Omari Hardwick. Yep...

  • Jug | May 3, 2011 12:08 PMReply

    @misha-LMBAO you know I was just joshing about the light-skinndedededed dude :-P

    For real tho, he was terrible on GOOD WIFE. I LOVE me some GOOD WIFE & he was the worst thing about last season. Everyone in the room is a human being and he's playing "SUPER ATTORNEY". Musta took notes from Terrence Howard :-P The only time he relaxed and was a human being was when they talked about Basketball (he & Will on the show, toldja I watch ;-D)

    The more we have these "who would you cast" sessions on S&A, it really hurts my heart that our talent pool, with all the thousands of people out there, is really only 10 deep. A Noun, A Verb & Denzel :-( LOL

    Maaaan, FUCK Hollywood LOL

  • Dankwa Brooks | May 3, 2011 11:15 AMReply

    Watching the trailer for 'The Ledge' (right here @ S&A) also got me thinking about TERENCE HOWARD. Yes his voice if off-putting, but he is an excellent actor and to me has Leading Man potential. His real life biracial roots can be worked into the script.

    I've also seen him in several episodes of 'Law & Order: LA' and some of his prosecution monologues are outstanding.

  • Dankwa Brooks | May 3, 2011 11:03 AMReply

    As QT is the REAL DRAW of this film I say cast an unknown and surround him with A-listers yes like 'Machete'.

    If not I say go for Blair Underwood who can really act and to me has leading man potential.

    LEADING MAN is something a lot of people don't have the potential for and even big movie stars like Martin Lawrence, Jamie Foxx and Morgan Freeman don't have it.

  • misha | May 3, 2011 11:00 AMReply

    Now Jug, how did I know you were going to bring up Ealy's green eyes and light skinnedness? :P I don't know. I guess it could detract from the film but the opposite could also be true. Those hypothetical questions you mentioned could add a mysterious quality to the character. Leaving the audience wondering can be a good thing, eh? And BOOOO!!! to you not liking Ealy on the Good Wife. I loved him.

    Btw, I think his show on the USA network is still in the tentative stage...or it was the last I checked.

    @tuesday, I love Peter on Spartacus but the man is like 50 years old. So...NO. LOL

  • Jug | May 3, 2011 10:49 AMReply

    @tuesday-true indeed. Peter was a beast in SPARTACUS. But saying you don't buy Idris as a slave, does that mean Peter "looks like slave"? I DARE you to say it to his face, I DOUBLE DOG dare ya! LOL

    Seriously, I'm with you on folks looking contemporary. That's what makes it so tough. The more movies & talent pools now are sophisticated (supposedly) you can't just throw anybody in the joint anymore (eye roll).

    Can we get some American names though?!? I feel like I'm gonna have to eat my words to Carey Carey LOL

  • tuesday | May 3, 2011 10:18 AMReply

    Disagree.

    My vote goes to:

    Peter Mensah

    He plays OENOMAUS in Spartacus on stars. He's both regal and badass. He's perfect. Idris is very talented but I just don't see him playing a slave. His look is too current. I don't buy it.

    That's my 2 cents.

  • Jug | May 3, 2011 9:18 AMReply

    @misha-LMAO I see you with Ali. He's just on that cusp age wise, or at least what he can play. If he came in with the meat on him from PREDATORS, he looks old. If he comes in slim & trim like CURIOUS CASE OF BENAJMIN BUTTON, he would kill it (and mind you, Django's SIZE is a factor).

    But Ealy?!? Naaah Man!! LOL That man was THE. WORST. on THE GOOD WIFE LOL. But the roles are totally different so he could do well-Django is much more BARBERSHOP than GOOD WIFE.

    I don't know if being light-skinned would add or detract because it's nowhere in the script, but having Django be lighter skinned may add an unnecessary component that an audience would wonder about. "Is he doing it because of the rape of his mother?" "How did he get those green eyes?" "Look at his amazing jawline, did that come from his European side?" LOL Besides, Ealy is on a show on USA right now as are many of the choices we've thrown out.

    Btw, Reg's people do know that S&A is not actually casting the film right? :-P

  • misha | May 3, 2011 8:17 AMReply

    LOL Well yes Jug, Idris is a grown ass man. But based on the intial description, I'd buy him in role. However, I can understand why Tarantino would want to go even younger...to cast someone wh could portray Django as naive but with potential to be a real badass.

    Mahershalalhashbaz would be another great choice but I'd actually put him in the same category as Idris.

    Here's a name I haven't seen mentioned yet: Michael Ealy. And no I don't want to hear anybody come at me with the "he's too pretty" excuse. While he is pretty (lol) his masculinity is still on display. He reminds me of Brad Pitt in that sense.

  • luke | May 3, 2011 8:06 AMReply

    mandatory old spice plug for this film

    isiah mustafa in some barrel washing quick commercial - TARANTINO - HEAR MY CRIES

    it would be awesome

  • Maggie | May 3, 2011 6:36 AMReply

    It's time that Hollywood gives other talented and experienced African American actors a good role instead of recycling the same actors over and over again. All Mr. Tarantino needs to do is think back.....with all his success, he should pay it forward.

    I vote for Reginald T. Dorsey. He absolutely has all the credentials. Do your screen tests, you'll see.

  • patrice | May 3, 2011 6:31 AMReply

    you're all wrong. it's gonna be Cee-Lo or Talib Kweli. or the little person from that dating show.

  • Jug | May 3, 2011 6:16 AMReply

    @me-Mahershalalhashbaz Ali is actually a great call!

  • Cynthia | May 3, 2011 5:48 AMReply

    Aww hell Jug...you can't leave us hangin' like that! lol Is the synopsis similar at least? Does it share Inglorious Basterds qualities...if you know what I mean?

  • me | May 3, 2011 5:45 AMReply

    I haven't seen Mahershalalhashbaz Ali's name here so I'll throw that in.

  • Lawrence | May 3, 2011 5:21 AMReply

    My first pick is Russell Hornsby. He was great as the black cop raising three kids with a professional wife on Lincoln Heights. Also, how about Shemar Moore, who seems to be maturing as an actor,

  • Jug | May 3, 2011 4:42 AMReply

    We're all wrong. Almost finished reading it. Very doubtful anyone over 35 is going to be Django, at most 38. 25 to 38 are gonna be the age of the actor to look mid 20s to early 30s. He WILL NOT look like a contemporary of Christopher Waltz.

    Nelsan Ellis, Anthony Mackie & Derek Luke are the closer to Django. No Idris & Isaacs or Anthony Anderson's, Definitely no Denzels & Sam Jacks-even Sterling K Brown reads too old...And I'm not saying it just to "prove my point" bcuz, really, I wouldn't want to cast Anthony Mackie in it, but his age & physicality fit what is written. I just can't go into the script specifics but trust that our initial ideas are nowhere NEAR the script.

    Folks are NOT gonna know what to make of this joint LMBAO

  • Jug | May 3, 2011 4:25 AMReply

    @misha-LOL Yeah I know that Idris is 38, but really he's going to be 39. I love Idris, as I do most of the actors mentioned, but what I can't stand is throwing an actor in a movie just cuz. "Who is right? Who fits the material? Not just 'who we love' ". Denzel should NEVER have been in DEJA VU, dude looked like Paula's dad, it was kinda creepy LOL

    And Terrence Howard..really?!? He needs some work on his vocal because he sounds scared to death everytime he is in that courtroom LOL Actually, he got better after the revamp & has stopped being "COURTROOM ATTORNEY" and started being human, he really went back to BEST MAN a bit, just say the line & stop trying to have an emotional affectation on everything-we get it, it's a dramatic moment, but take some notes from Alfred Molina..."saying" the line is a lot more impactful than "acting" the line.

    And in this script there are references to both Django's naivety & his size that scream young. Not kid young, like Donald Glover, but young like Derek Luke or Columbus Short...and there is NO way that Idris (or folks like Blair) can play young like that, sorry, not after DADDY'S LITTLE GIRLS & SOMETIMES IN APRIL...that's a grown ass man going to 4th & 5th grade PTA meetings.

    @Cynthia-Sorry hon, I am not trying to be that guy that says "oh I know the secret" but I think this thing is still a little quiet around town. What I will say is A) DEFINITELY Tarantino B) it IS like INGLORIOUS BASTERDS..in THAT way LOL & C) Armand White might just say this is the best movie of the year (he might even say it's a documentary) LMBAO

    And I'm with Dankwa, the real draw is QT. This will be a either a complete unknown, a low key journeyman young actor, or a waaay out of left field choice, but you never know with fool ass casting of late :-D

    It'll make somebody a star.

    There is going to be no middle ground on this movie. Love it or hate it, black or white, but it will definitely get people talking & be entertaining.

  • ladyb | May 3, 2011 3:18 AMReply

    @misha...Me too!!

  • misha | May 3, 2011 2:42 AMReply

    Jug, you do know that Idris is 38, right? I'm just sayin'. LOL And I think he can actually play younger than his age. Aww hell, I'm just set on Idris as Django...no one's changing my mind. Uh, uh. :D

    I'd certainly like to get my hands on this script to read for myself.

  • Alexandra | May 2, 2011 12:52 PMReply

    No question - Reginald T. Dorsey, a REAL AMERICAN COWBOY!!! C'mon Quentin - he wouldn't even have to "act" because he is the REAL DEAL!!! Hollywood's used Italians to play Native Americans for years, now you want to use actors to play cowboys? Why not use a real cowboy who can also act? I'm from South Dakota and I know cowboys - cast REGINALD T. DORSEY!!!

  • Connie | May 2, 2011 12:50 PMReply

    I vote for Reginald T Dorsey too! let's do the right thing and cast the right person for the part!! He is a wonderful actor and "can ride" like nobody's business!!

  • Jeff | May 2, 2011 11:48 AMReply

    There are alot of fine actors that have been mentioned but only one that would be a natural fit..Reginald Dorsey..A true American cowboy...Also need to cast Glynn Turman in this movie..both are outstanding actors and great representatives of true Black American cowboys!

  • Real Jonny | May 2, 2011 11:30 AMReply

    Hmm, Idris Elba may be the best fit for this as it needs a guy who can act AND have screen presence because this is very much a STARRRING role.

    Speaking of Elba, you guys need to see a film he did with Eamonn Walker called Legacy where Elba shows he can ACT.

  • Dana Marie Arentzen | May 2, 2011 11:28 AMReply

    I cast my vote for Reginald Dorsey. He is an American Actor who is also a cowboy. He lives eats and breaths this lifestyle. He is the ONLY choice for this role. If you want authenticity for this movie, then please cast Reg in this role. He IS the only choice.
    Thank you

  • Sergio | May 2, 2011 8:56 AMReply

    On second thought, Issac de Bankole would be a really interesting, off the wall choice. He has that mysterious, "zen like" quality that could work. Plus he's got that masculine quality that's needed and absolute REAL presence on the screen.

    And Eammon Walker would also be a good choice as well probably.

    But who in the hell is Reginald T. Dorsey and why has he got his family starting a write-in campaign for him? Hey we're not casting the film, Trarantio is

  • L.Farr - Jag | May 2, 2011 6:32 AMReply

    R. T. Dorsey was created for this role! Q. T. needs to know how many benefits come with casting a real cowboy in his attempt to recreate the image of the real thing; The very real black Cowboy! Go take that Mr. Dorsey, its yours to claim! Do it with your God given authority darlin!

    Best,
    L.

  • Jug | May 2, 2011 5:31 AMReply

    LOL Cynthia fighting for her guy :-) Yeah Idris is not overrated, especially against Michael Clarke Duncan?!? Beasted in GREEN MILE & was funny in TALADEGA NIGHTS, but name something else he blew it out the water or was memorable..STREET FIGHTER?!? LOL

    Ving, been there with Rosewood. And from that whole description there needs to be a just enuff youthfullness to the character, at least to go under the tutelage of the german bounty hunter. Vings a lil old for that, but young cats like Mackie dont say family and kids yet, so their man card aint hittin' on all cylinders yet. There needs to be a maturity in the face & stature that most cats that are on the scene don't have (Derek Luke, Mike Ealy, Lance Gross,etc)

    Again, not hating at all, just talking about what might work best for this role. Brad Pitt, arguably Hollywood's top good looking dude, started aging and looking "mature" once he had kids, and Obama was mighty young till that mid-term election and that stress got them grey hairs poppin' out LOL

  • Cynthia | May 2, 2011 5:13 AMReply

    Um Lynn...did you just say Idris is OVERRATED? Those are fightin' words around here. lol Go watch "Sometimes In April" and tell me that's overrated acting.

  • Jug | May 2, 2011 4:56 AMReply

    Issac de Bankole would be an excellent choice, but for me he falls into the "too old to be mentored" category even though mentoring, especially killing, isn't about age, but about morality. But he would destroy it.

    Adewale..hmm, not sure. Loved him as Adebisi, but he has a hard time shaking his British & Nigerian tongue (watch clips of FASTER and you'll see).

    I hate to say it, but Eammon Walker would probably eek out Idris, just because dude drips intensity, he sweats it out of his pores. Anybody who's seen CADILLAC RECORDS and saw his Howlin' Wolf knows that (unfortunately it's his pretty much standard for everything-check out ONCE IN THE LIFE).

    But let's play a game, let's see how many AMERICAN black actors we can name, 28 -40 with 45 being a push? And those ages are about how they "look", not how old they actually are.

    Gets tough indeed...

  • Maitefa | May 2, 2011 4:39 AMReply

    If it's maturity you're looking for, how about Issac de Bankole? Also, I agree that Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje would be a great choice and is younger and more muscular. I can see Eamonn Walker as well.

  • Helen Hart | May 2, 2011 4:39 AMReply

    I vote Reginald T. Dorsey. An American Cowboy, an actor/producer, FROM TEXAS!

  • JMac | May 2, 2011 4:17 AMReply

    Okay people, you're irritating me with this Dorsey whosit talk - as if the S & A crew don't know what you're trying to do...Talk about desperation. I'm going with Idris all the way or else some unknown Richard Roundtree/Jim Brown reincarnated brother.

  • Jug | May 2, 2011 4:10 AMReply

    And I want it to be clear, Reg is a good choice, but Pickens & Turman are not. Are we thinking about all facets of a character or are we just throwing out names, hell why don't we cast Jesus?!

    And the idea that casting " who you really are" is a bit ridiculous, just ask JERSEY SHORE LOL Let's give some thought to these choices...

  • Micheal L. Nesbitt | May 2, 2011 3:48 AMReply

    There are a number of Black actors not so well known who can do the job as well..Myself included..!!!

    Micheal L. Nesbitt

  • Micheal L. Nesbitt | May 2, 2011 3:46 AMReply

    My vote goes to Reginald Dorsey...!!!!!!

  • Daryl | May 2, 2011 3:35 AMReply

    I vote Reginald T Dorsey for this film. He's a true AFRICAN AMERICAN COWBOY, that knows the ropes.

    Give him this opportunity to shine!!

  • Daryl | May 2, 2011 3:33 AMReply

    I vote Reginald T Dorsey for this film.

    He's a true AFRICAN AMERICAN COWBOY who knows the ropes.

    Give him this opportunity to shine!!

  • Darrell Kelley | May 2, 2011 3:25 AMReply

    Reginald Dorsey would be a great choice.Reginald is a true American Cowboy whom is black ,who other can deliver or convey a depiction of a Black Cowboy than a Black Cowboy .Taking a role and acting is fine but having a role that does not require anything but you being yourself creates better casting.Reginald Dorsey is a true American Cowboy whom is well suited for this caling.Thanks

  • Jug | May 2, 2011 3:08 AMReply

    WOOWEE! Reg got his entourage to come out LOL I ain't mad, it's hard as hell to get a look besides the face last night on "Inside Edition". Oh & Reg would be a good choice tho, James Pickens & Glynn Turman..seriously?!? Are we casting his dad?!?

    I'm not feeling most of the usual suspects thrown out because they're the usual suspects. Tarantino's movies seem to work best when you get a wild as hell choice or a totally new name (he's like the Bill Belichick of film). Mr. "Stayin' Alive" Travolta as a vicious sociopathic hitman? Bruce Willis as a lowly broken down boxer? Sam Jack as a bible spouting hitman? Brad Pitt as a redneck Nazi scalper? Uma Thurman as a kitana blade wielding assassin? I don't think this will be a name, or at least not the usual suspects like we're thinking. Idris, Hounsou, Ejiofor even Jackson, are a little too high profile for this. I'm gonna put my money on a "that's that guy" choice. Actors like Nelsan Ellis from TRUE BLOOD & Sterling Brown from ARMY WIVES would fit. One factor most of these names don't take into account is it's a period piece, and some people have a contemporary face and a contemporary energy. Jamie Hector & Michael K Williams sure have a the face for slavery America, but they are CONTEMPORARY as hell (yes, even on BOARDWALK EMPIRE Michael is Omar, sorry but he is-also was on THE KILL POINT).

    Also, hate to say it, but Tarantino loves FACES. REAL faces, ones with lines on them-character-guys & women who have stories through their look. Pretty dudes aren't gonna be at the top of the list, so basically the Chestnuts & Diggs (& pretty much anybody in Tyler Perry movies) of the world are gonna be exed. And that's not me talking, just look at all of his movies (PULP FICTION, RESERVOIR DOGS, GRINDHOUSE, INGLORIOUS BASTERDS, JACKIE BROWN), he doesn't cast people that make you "swoon" he casts people that are first and foremost great actors but also have really interesting character faces. Even in this one, Christopher Waltz & Franco Nero, shit Nero looks like dude from the Doz Equis commerical "Stay thirsty my friends" LOL

    Jaleel White & Marlon Wayans and the like, nah, he still is gonna cast MEN, and they don't bring that "goddamn he bout to tear shit up!" when they walk in the room, no matter HOW many pushups they do. A "MAN" in a project, folks need to feel like when he's on the scene, he's either gonna "FIX IT" or "HANDLE IT". I laughin' about the Fred Williamson & Jim Brown thoughts, but I BET YOU that's where he's gonna go. Aside from Idris, I don't see an actual "actor" that gets that love right now. Yeah, Mackie still reads like a college student & Ejiofor, whom I love actually, does tend to be more cerebal. Can he bring it? Hell yeah, he was great in REDBELT & SERENITY, but that was still a trained/logical fighter. This Django is going to have a foulness to him, a bitterness, a dirtiness that needs to come across in his face, not just his acting & he's going to need to enjoy it a bit-relish it. And without reading the script he probably is going to be more of Blondie from THE GOOD THE BAD THE UGLY, where there is a deep pain in him, he doesn't talk & pontificate on shit, he just rolls up & blows you away or tortures your ass reeeaaal slow Wu-Tang style LOL (boy I can't WAIT)

    Honestly, I'd love to throw my hat in the ring LOL but I'd just want to be a part or it. DEFINITELY going to be an interesting project...& I want an American actor for this, just for GP & symbolism, we DO have good quality actors here (Carey! LOL)

    ....John Singleton is rolling over in his grave :-D

  • Benja | May 2, 2011 2:40 AMReply

    Idris YES! but here are some other choices:
    Blair Underwood
    This one will sound crazy but Wayne Brady
    Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje who played Adebisi on the OZ
    Mehcad Brooks who played Eggs on True Blood
    Djimon Hounsou

  • Michael A. Ortega | May 2, 2011 2:19 AMReply

    I would also suggest Reginald Dorsey since he can ride and act.

  • misha | May 2, 2011 2:10 AMReply

    Umm, what am I missing with the Dorsey pick? I get that he's a real American cowboy but I don't think he's right for this part. For one, he's seems to be too old. The description posted here stated that Django would be under the tutelage of Waltz's character so he apparently has to have some youthfulness to him. I certainly don't want to see a man just as old as or older than Waltz's character being mentored by him. Just no....

    Idris overrated? Blasphemy.

  • Lon Dorsey | May 2, 2011 1:50 AMReply

    Hello Q...

    LOOKS LIKE... thars a lotta fellas hangin' round the 'Okay
    Corral' yonda... see? Theys all hankerin' tuh git themselves intuh yor castin' as that hombre what kin ride a hoss like the lightnin' itself.

    Well, I'ma gonna tellya, 'n not cause he's my cousin now,
    but cause it's the dad-blamed truth. Reginald Dorsey is the out ridin'est, out shootin'est character what you done ever seed!!

    Taught'em every thang he kbows! heh heh heh... so you gonna need me too. I don't ride, but I got the most shift-eyed "come-backs" what you done ever heard of! Guaranteed to crack you up ev'ry time! Heh! Yessir! Ev'ry time!

    Anyhow, that's muh take on it.

    I "spectapacate" ya know full well how tuh ketchup wit "Texas Reg"... but iffen ye don't... well mosey on ovah to duh Imdb sign post... 'n look 'em up! Heh!

  • Eric | May 2, 2011 1:39 AMReply

    EVerybody's wrong. This is Tarantino. It's Fred Williamson!

  • misha | May 2, 2011 1:22 AMReply

    @ladyb, I agree with you about Cheadle but I actually think if given the chance, Chiwetel would shine as a leading man. He got all the ingredients (talent, looks, screen presence) just needs the opportunity, I think.

  • Lynn | May 2, 2011 1:13 AMReply

    To be honest Idris Elba is OVERRATED in my opinion. They should go with Michael Clarke Duncan or Ving Rhames!!!

  • misha | May 2, 2011 1:10 AMReply

    Well considering that Tarantino is casting "top shelf" I think Idris is at the very top of the list. The only other actors who qualify as "top shelf" and who fit the bill are Will and Denzel and I think it's safe to say that neither will get this part. Idris may not be as popular as those two but he not only has American appeal but also international appeal and that will obviously way heavily in the casting decision as well.

    Chiwetel Ejiofor was my other suggestion. I get what Sergio is saying about his "sensitive and intellectual persona" but as I've said, I think he has the acting chops to excel in a role such as this one.

    Mackie, I'm sorry but I don't see it. For once, I agree with Sergio. And to take it just a bit further, I think he lacks that "it" factor that propels good (even great) actors into leading men.

  • ladyb | May 1, 2011 12:59 PMReply

    What's with the obsession with Denzel? Jeeze, is he the black go-to guy now? Denzel is too old, sorry. Just like Harrison Ford in Indiana Jones...RIDICULOUS! I agree 100% with this article, Idris is the most obvious choice...he has greater onscreen PRESENCE than all the other choices suggested. Mackie is too "soft" Chiwetel is an excellent actor, but he just doesn't have that leading man appeal for a film like this. Just like Don Cheadle, he just doesn't...DEAL WITH IT!

  • Jules W | May 1, 2011 12:29 PMReply

    I'd like to see Michael K. Williams in this movie.

  • Lindsey Page | May 1, 2011 12:26 PMReply

    I wanna see a REAL Black cowboy.......and there are Real ones who can ACT........Why does hollywood have to import a Black Cowboy???? Reginal T. Dorsey is the real deal........Hey Quentin.......take a look at the real thing, you won't be sorry!!!

  • Michael Harris | May 1, 2011 12:22 PMReply

    You need to consider Reginald T. Dorsey! He's a real actor AND cowboy!

  • Laura | May 1, 2011 12:05 PMReply

    How about Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (Lost, The Bourne Identity)?

  • Mike McFarland | May 1, 2011 12:05 PMReply

    Coming from an old cowboy, reckon the only fitting one to play the role would be Reginald T. Dorsey. He is Texas bred and raised, hell of a fine actor and film maker. Oh yeah... he's black... Can't see them casting some limey in the role... Maybe throw Danny Glover in there as a supporting actor..

  • William L. Johnson | May 1, 2011 12:04 PMReply

    Ok Quentin!

    No need to hire any English actors for your western, there are enough great actor right here in LA that are 100 times better than Idris. I loved me some Stringerbell, but it's time you use the new crew of hot black actors. We not all that new in the black community but we still new to people.
    If you would like to rap, hit me up if you trying to make a classic.
    One cat you gotts to have in your movie is Reginald T. Dorsey, look him up, hell look me up too, i would play a great bad guy.

  • Nina | May 1, 2011 11:51 AMReply

    Ok Quentin!

    Give our American Black Actors a chance that are real life Cowboys and they know the history behind it.. You know that old slogan "Made in the USA" Well use it we have a lot of them.

    Love Idris, But he is english I am so very tired of seeing english actors with american accents. And I do not think he will do it justice being that he is English and will he do his homework.

    We have several good black actors that are cowboys"

    1. Glynn Turman
    2. Reginald Dorsey.
    3. James Pickens Jr. (Grey's Anatomy)
    and the list could go on and on.

  • Jon Paul Preyer | May 1, 2011 11:48 AMReply

    If this movie ie going to be cast then we should get some real "cowboys" in this film. Reginald T. Dorsey, Texan and true cowboy that can act would be brilliant for this film. He's an industry veteran and can also bring the "heavy". The British actors mentioned here are fine actors but guys like Dorsey, Chestnutt, Cuba Gooding, Jr. are authentic and only fitting that this film incorporates the heart of black cowboys, even Buffalo Soldiers should it become a film.

  • KJ | May 1, 2011 11:48 AMReply

    Reginald T. Dorsey should be considered for this film because he is A Real African American Cowboy. Its in his blood. Reginald is a great Actor and is very dedicated to his work. He has the knowledge and training. What more could you ask for..

  • Cherish | May 1, 2011 10:52 AMReply

    Mike Colter
    He is an actor who has a recurring role on "the Good wife" playing a powerful Drug Dealer. I think he was also in Million dollar baby.

    Or Morris chestnutt.

  • Miles Ellison | May 1, 2011 9:54 AMReply

    Since this is Hollywood, they'll probably cast Robert Downey Jr. and put him in blackface.

  • James Richards | May 1, 2011 9:39 AMReply

    Jamie Hector. Can't believe no one mentioned him. And now he's just about the right age.

  • Chele Belle | May 1, 2011 9:04 AMReply

    Chiwetel Ejiofor could more than hold his own as a man to be reckon with. Anyone who's seen him in FOUR BROTHERS or SERENITY or even CHILDREN OF MEN can vouch for that. Eamonn Walker could also do a good job.

  • Jody | May 1, 2011 9:00 AMReply

    Since Africans always like to moan and complain about Black americans "taking their roles" , portraying Africans , how about they cast a Black american for this role? I mean , its only right that they do

  • Screen Nation | May 1, 2011 7:36 AMReply

    Whoever gets this role and Im for Chewi or Idris in that order, as I think Chewi just edges it for all round performance ability, I would love to see Gabriel Casseus somewhere up there. I love his ability and wish he would be cast in a much more wider way.

    Also the wife, would have to be superhot to be held by the slavers and for Django to go real wild!

  • K | May 1, 2011 7:15 AMReply

    I could see Eamonn Walker & Idris Elba doing this role justice.

    However, I can also picture Sterling K. Brown in this role.
    He has the intellect of Chiwetel, the raw masculinity of Idris, and the physicality of Eamonn. I think he'd be near perfect.

    He was damn good as a hunter on The CW's Supernatural; he wore that grief and guilt and craziness like a second skin.
    He's now on relatively lighter fare, with Army Wives, but the man is a great actor.

  • Cynthia | May 1, 2011 6:30 AMReply

    I can only think of two "top shelf" black actors...Will Smith and Denzel Washington and they're not Quentin's style at all. I would LOVE to see Idris in this but Quentin likes to surprise. He may turn to his BFF of the moment...RZA. He's already working with him on his film so don't be shocked. I suspect the "top shelf" description applies to the white actors in the film.

  • Zeus | May 1, 2011 5:56 AMReply

    Elba was one of my choices so I definitely agree. He WILL be cast.

  • Laura | May 1, 2011 5:52 AMReply

    How about my --favorite Jeffrey Wright. He may not have the skin complexion of the aforementioned *wink* (don't be hatin' on the hi yella brothas)

    I can see him as brooding as all those characters in the old spaghetti westerns.

    Just a thought

  • julius Hollingsworth | May 1, 2011 5:45 AMReply

    How about lesser known but just as talented actors likeGilbert Glen Brown-Er,Malik Whitfield-Temptations,Game etc.,Isiaha Washington,Alimi Ballard,Russell Hornsby,Michael jai white,Eamonn Walker and then Idris and Anthony Mackie and long shot Royce Johnson all not teenagers but not so old
    that people no longer believe they can do damage.

  • monkey | May 1, 2011 5:42 AMReply

    Wood Harris

  • Ghost | May 1, 2011 5:33 AMReply

    Since we are tossing out names-

    Phil Lamarr (Tarantino owes him for Pulp Fiction)

    Marlon Wayans? He can't be any worst than considering Tyler Perry.

    Jaleel White-stop laughing

    Sean Nelson from The Wood/Fresh

    Anthony Anderson?

    Like Tambay said-you can cast a lesser name in that role and surround him with bigger names-we saw that in Machete.

    IF Donald Glover wins out-I suspect that is more of he's on a hit tv show and more folks know who he is versus some of the others. In fact is any company related to NBC working on this film?

  • Sergio | May 1, 2011 4:17 AMReply

    You know I also did consider Hounsou as a possible choice. I was watching my blu-ray of Gladiator the other das and he sure can convicingly kill people. But I still think he lacks the "weight" as I call it, the solid screen presence, to pull a role like this off.

    And then of course there is his accent. Though of course he could work with a voice coach to remove it

  • Shaun | May 1, 2011 3:58 AMReply

    Although I do not disagree that Elba will be good for the role, but there is also Don Cheadle, Ving Rhames (can probably pull this off with no problem) and J August Richards who might not be a recognizable name (he was on the tv show 'Angel' for 4 yrs), but he is a decent actor that mostly been typecast as a lawyer.

  • Duncan Manutz | May 1, 2011 3:51 AMReply

    As long as there are no Fuckin rappers in this film.....

  • roberto | May 1, 2011 3:37 AMReply

    i thought about Djimon but i cant imagine him carrying a film, he has the look and masculinaty but not the charm IMO

  • tambay | May 1, 2011 3:26 AMReply

    Don't look now folks, but I hear Donald Glover has started a Tweeter campaign to get him looked at for the part, just like he did with Spiderman..

    *wink*

    But seriously, a name that I'm surprised hasn't been mentioned yet... Djimon Hounsou. Isn't he supposed to be Hollywood's go-to guy for "slave" roles.

    Ok. Not-so seriously. That's another *wink*

  • roberto | May 1, 2011 3:20 AMReply

    will smith.......no
    denzel........a bit too old for role
    sam jackson.......ditto

    Idris is the first person that came to mind and the only one that would fit in my opinion

  • Carlton Jordan | May 1, 2011 3:18 AMReply

    Idris and Chiwetel are both good choices. I DONT want to see Mackie in this. But id take him over 50 Cent or Iice Cube or Tyler Perry. It sounds like a concept film and doesnt need a big Alister. I don't know...My pick is Idris, he's big enough and crossover and international...so there...

  • SayNay | May 1, 2011 3:02 AMReply

    First of all I want to give props to this site for breaking some major news on this project.

    As far as who should star in this role. I really don't know. From this list Idris is the top pick because at least for non-black audiences they'll come out: 1. because it's Tarantino and 2. Stringer Bell. I don't think Daddy's Little Girls or Obsessed really figures into the equation where those audiences are concerned. Chiwetel might be an interesting #2. I know he typically plays the more straight laced characters, but it may stretch him as an actor. Michael Jai White is too pretty!

    As far as commercially successful mainstream black actors...Denzel maybe, but Will Smith definitely no. Samuel L. Jackson will probably have a role in the movie regardless because Tarantino loves Samuel L. Jackson.

    Unfortunately is there anyone else?

  • true | May 1, 2011 3:01 AMReply

    Love,Love Idris, but Denzel frakkin Washington would be my 1st choice.

  • Adam Scott Thompson | May 1, 2011 2:50 AMReply

    He'll never be as important to white Hollywood as Citizen Coon.

  • Alphonso Whitfield III | May 1, 2011 2:40 AMReply

    QT has a good eye for actors and roles...so let's not rush to judgement or speculate to wildly so as to predispose disappointment about something that has not happened.

  • masterkiller | May 1, 2011 2:34 AMReply

    i like anthony mackie in the role . he has done consistently fine work in supporting roles. given a chance to carry a movie would be the star turn he would need to take him to the next level. i feel he would be up to the challenge.
    we are falling into the old hollywood syndrome that there can only be great black actor at time.now its Idris,before him Denzel, and before him Danny glover.
    whereas white actors like pacino and deniro can coexist and both work

  • reg | May 1, 2011 2:26 AMReply

    i like elba, too, but i disagree completely with your dismissal of Ejiofor's "too intellectual persona". utter nonsense, my friend. he's an excellent actor who is far more of an "everyman" than elba. elba would be perfect if they were remaking clint eastwood's speghetti westerns: tall, handsome, few words, enigmatic, hard to read, etc. Ejiofor is the hero we feel we can be, not the one we can only wish we were.

  • Stagolee | May 1, 2011 2:19 AMReply

    Eamonn Walker. Not a big name but would bring the heavy.

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