By Oliver Lyttelton | www.oliverlyttelton.com May 18, 2011 at 4:00AM
We're Pretty Sure 'Sexy, Ukulele-Playing Teacher' Is An Oxymoron
Oscar Isaac is definitely about to have a moment. The 31-year-old Guatemalan-born actor has made a striking impression in the last few years in projects like "The Nativity Story," "Che" and "Body of Lies," before really grabbing people's attention last year as the sole highlight of Ridley Scott's "Robin Hood." Since then, he gave the only tolerable performance in "Sucker Punch," and landed key roles in "Drive" and "W.E." as well as allegedly being director Tony Gilroy's favorite of the contenders to star in "The Bourne Legacy," before Jeremy Renner took the role.
Now, the actor's trying something he's never really taken on before: the romantic lead. Variety reports that Isaac has signed on to star in Walden Media's "When I Rise," a drama that focuses on the educational crisis in the U.S. at the moment. The film focuses on two mothers, played by Playlist favorites Maggie Gyllenhaal and Viola Davis, who decide to transform the struggling inner city school that their children attend.
Isaac will play Gyllenhaal's love interest, Michael Raymond, a "sexy, ukulele-playing teacher," a character description which hasn't stopped being hilarious in the 18 hours since we first heard it. It's not a bad premise, exactly, and we like the casting so far, but we're not expecting much here: Walden Media's track record is weak, "Bridge to Terabithia" aside, and "Beastly" director Daniel Barnz is directing. Filming starts next week, and 20th Century Fox will put the finished product out sometime in 2012.