By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist January 26, 2012 at 2:01PM
It's been a while since we last heard anything about Darren Aronofsky's "Noah" which has been on a circuitous path to the big screen. A long-standing dream project for the director, it already has a graphic novel incarnation, but over the past year Fox and New Regency came aboard to finance the big budget spectacle that reportedly has a $130 million budget. The film got another boost when Christian Bale circled the lead role, but his commitments to Terrence Malick's back-to-back films shooting this year took him out, with Michael Fassbender now tipped to take over (though he's remained mum on his potential involvement as it seems too tenuous this early on). We haven't gotten wind of much else in a while but it appears that behind the scenes, the wheels are in motion.
During the latest Oscar Poker chat between Sasha Stone (Awards Daily) and Jeffrey Wells (Hollywood Elsewhere), the latter revealed some interesting tidibts he received while chatting with Aronofsky's regular collaborator, cinematographer Matthew Libatique. Yes, this is a bit of hearsay, but this isn't "Law & Order" or a courtroom and it's pretty fascinating stuff. "...And he was telling me about 'Noah' and what the script is like. They're going to start shooting in July in New York and Iceland and he says it's really a good script. They're really doing the story of Noah, a very unlikely subject you might think for a cutting edge fellow like Darren Aronofsky, but that's what they're doing. It's going to be more likely a Fall 2013 release," Wells shared.
As for who's gonna take the lead, that's still up in the air, but it's not the only part up for grabs, as "Noah" will feature of villain (of sorts). "That's the hangup right now, they haven't cast Noah yet. But it's got a guy in his 40s so it's not going to be young. It's going to be 40s. And there's a big villain part, gotta have a villain in the story of Noah," Wells added. "Someone who's saying 'Listen, don't listen to him. We're fine! We don't need to build any ark. Don't be so alarmist! Don't be so fundamentalist.' You know? One of those guys. So it sounded like a lot of fun, actually."
So yeah, less of a villain and more of a doubting Thomas perhaps, someone who will challenge Noah's faith that God is sending a flood, is our guess. And a summer shoot would likely conflict with Fassbender's commitment to "Twelve Years A Slave," so we presume he's out of the mix (though if 'Slave' shoots and wraps fast, we suppose it's still a possibility). It looks like Steven Spielberg isn't the only filmmaker dipping his toes in the Old Testament...and should it come together, Aronofsky will get there before him. Fascinating stuff, and here's hoping we hear more soon.