By Christopher Campbell | Spout April 13, 2011 at 6:38AM
A funny thing about the goth subculture is that guys always love when a hot, popular girl turns to the dark side. But nobody ever seems to want or expect the jock or preppy boy to start wearing fishnets and makeup and all-black wardrobes. That's why the kids would be very excited if there was a female equivalent of "The Crow" and they heard Scarlett Johansson or Olivia Munn was playing her (actually Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander might be that equivalent, though she's less of a pin-up type). But Bradley Cooper potentially cast as Eric Draven in the actual "Crow" reboot? Well that's almost enough for the goth kids to protest (but they'll obviously just sulk harder instead). I can joke, by the way, because I had a t-shirt with this image on it throughout high school.
I understand the outcries around the film blog water cooler. Cooper as Draven seems as inappropriate as replacing Rooney with Katherine Heigl for "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" (thanks for that ridiculous image, Monika Bartyzel). Yet I also don't know who the internerds would prefer. Is there an actor out there who is already a goth-ish kind of guy? Jake Gyllenhaal returning to his roots? Maybe. And was original "Crow" star Brandon Lee even that fitting beforehand? Not if you know him best from videos like this. European period piece regular Vincent Perez was more like it, and anyway we were more concerned with Iggy Pop's casting in "The Crow: City of Angels." Did anyone see "The Crow: Salvation"? Didn't Eric Mabius seem a bit too jock-like for that one, too?
Maybe it doesn't help attempting to ease the Cooper casting suggestion by referencing Mabius or that third film (wait, there was another, with Eddy Furlong? He seems suitable, actually). What I should focus on is the fact that Cooper has an interesting mix of likability and repulsion that I think is quite perfect for a goth hero. But then, I knew a lot of smarmy douchebag goth dudes in my time, many of whom completely mimicked Draven's look and were probably a lot of the inspiration behind the great goth satire "Johnny the Homicidal Maniac." Now, if they made a movie of that and cast Zac Efron, we could really start the riot.
Just to show he has a dark side, here's Cooper as Satan in an old "Stella" short:
Now, here are some snarky thoughts on the possibility that Cooper could play "The Crow" from the blogosphere:
Look at this face? Do you see this guy listening to Bauhaus? Bradley Cooper comes off more as a Rush or Van Halen fan. Nothing against Rush or Van Halen. Probably some rap, really liked Pearl Jam. Pop music. You don’t suspect that this guy can do goth. You don’t suspect he was a regular at midnights of Rocky Horror Picture Show. [...] The appeal of the character has been maintained in the Hot Topic goth set. Cooper doesn’t seem to have any Joy Division swagger, so by casting him the picture would be alienating the base.
If you tilt your head, squint your eyes, and stand on one foot, Bradley Cooper still doesn’t look like he’d make a good goth. He looks like the guy that beat up the goths in high school before throwing the winning touchdown and heading home to bed down the prom queen.
That’s right, they’re remaking The Crow, and for the lead, they cast a guy named “Brad” who played the preppy bad guy in Wedding Crashers. Yes, I’m sure the goths will be thrilled about this one. [...] But if it’s already gritty, how will they modernize the remake?? Maybe with Brad Cooper playing the lead, they could retitle it “The WASP.”
Finally, the high school girl who wears only black and the captain of the cheerleading team will be able to at last gaze at a single Hollywood heartthrob poster with mutual enjoyment! I guess?
If this actually pans out, it will definitely be one of the weirder and more ill-informed casting decisions I’ve seen in a long time. [...] I don’t hate Bradley Cooper, but let’s face it, the man has made a career out of playing douchebags, and the thought of him wearing white facepaint and glowering at evildoers just seems laughable. I realize they are looking to take this franchise in a new direction, but capturing The Hangover crowd does not seem like it should be high on their priority list.
There is one thing I have to say: Bradley Cooper is a villain from an 80s movie. He trained at the Cobra Kai dojo and he pledged the Alpha Betas. How the fuck is he a movie star? And what’s more, how is he The Crow?
Cool! Maybe next they can remake Heathers with Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez. Instead of killing the popular kids at school they can take them to raffle night at their Methodist church!
Look, some roles are defined by the people who play them. Brandon Lee is and will always be Eric Draven. They can remake this 100 more times and nothing will be as good as the original. Nothing. Especially if they cast a tan, blonde dude who whips his hair and kills his enemies with a smolder. If Bradley Cooper wants me to take him seriously, he needs to get shot in the abdomen and die on the set. I'm pretty sure Hollywood can remake him.
So it’s natural that they’ve turned to Bradley Cooper, whose unctuous alpha-male exterior is really just a mask for a deep inner torment, the endurance of a permanent Rush Week in hell’s most exclusive fraternity. It is only natural. [...] Cooper’s wish to break out of the sunny, smarmy roles that he’s long inhabited—his characters’ brash overconfidence and constant winning streaks holding up a cruel mirror to the pain he feels inside—and take him to darker places, such as that time he wore a black wig in The Rocker.
Bradley Cooper is aching to star in a remake of The Crow, having already met with director Juan Carlos Fresnadillo in Spain, where they “hit it off and shared a vision of the film.” Was that vision spray-tanned, cocky and wearing a sharp suit? Because otherwise we can’t picture it.
it’s hard to picture Bradley, who has made a name for himself as the go-to-guy for troubled but charming protagonists, stepping into the dark and violent world of The Crow. Despite appearing in several dark films such as Midnight Meat Train, Cooper was definitely not on our list of potential leading men for the remake (of course, neither was Mark Wahlberg).
Cooper seems a little too pretty to play the role made famous, and infamous, by Brandon Lee, but maybe that’s just the kind of role he’s looking for. Cooper’s always sort of the “douche-boat” – the douchebag/dreamboat character who’s good looking but kind of an ass. He played that in The A-Team, Wedding Crashers, The Hangover and he’s playing it right now in Limitless and The Hangover Part II. Maybe he feels that a role like The Crow, where he’d have to be violent, intense and brooding, would help to alleviate some of the type casting that he currently faces.
Let me be clear. I have nothing against Bradley Cooper. I think he's a nice enough guy. I think he's a talented enough actor. But he is clearly, outrageously wrong for this character. This would be like casting Wilfrid Brimley in softporn. Just. Don't. Do. It.
Cooper isn't a bad actor by any means, but it's hard to deny how strange this casting would be. The Crow is a dark character, and that's not exactly what Cooper has made a name for himself doing. The idea of a Crow remake in general is stupid, but the idea of "Bradley Cooper is The Crow" is ridiculous.
I think Cooper is a pretty fun actor, but I have my suspicions he can pull off dark and brooding -- it's hard to be that handsome and be angry with life. I also think Cooper is a pretty huge star now and has many better offers than The Crow, so I wouldn't worry about it.