Tinkering and Tailoring a Spy Series Re-boot

Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy is happening again.

Fresh from the success of highly acclaimed vampire movie “Let The Right One In,” award-winning Swedish director Tomas Alfredson has signed on as director on Working Title upcoming project “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy,” the company announced Thursday.

The new feature film adaptation of John Le Carre’s seminal cold war best-seller is being produced by Working Title’s co-chairmen Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner, and marks their next collaboration with Academy Award-nominated screenwriter Peter Morgan (“Frost/Nixon,” “The Queen”) and will be exec-produced by Debra Hayward, Liza Chasin, John Le Carre and Peter Morgan.

But what British actor can hope to fill Alec Guinness’s shoes?

Who would you cast as the “old, estranged, overweight, taciturn and sharp-minded protagonist”?

It’s the “overweight” that… um… narrows the field, isn’t it?

How about Anthony Hopkins? He’s not overweight, but he could easily convince us that he was.

If Alan Rickman put on some weight, I’d love to see him take it on.

If Ricky Gervais gained a few pounds and took on a dramatic role… or Eddie Izzard, for that matter… but they’d both have to play much older than they are.

Michael Gambon?

Gary Oldman? He can do anything.

Ahh… but if I’m going to nominate actors who can transform themselves and do anything, then the choice is obvious:

Helen Mirren.

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About Jeffrey Overstreet

Jeffrey Overstreet has two passions: writing fiction, and celebrating art — music, cinema, photography, literature — through writing and teaching. He is the author of a “memoir of dangerous moviegoing” — Through a Screen Darkly. And his four-novel fantasy series, The Auralia Thread, which begins with Auralia's Colors, was published by Random House. He speaks at universities and conferences around the world about understanding art through eyes of faith. He is earning his MFA in Creative Writing at Seattle Pacific University, where he has worked for 11 years as an editor, writer, and communications project manager. His work has been recognized in The New Yorker, TIME, The Seattle Times, IMAGE, Ravi Zacharias International — and Christianity Today, where he served as a film journalist for more than a decade. He recently began a weekly column called "Listening Closer" for Christ and Pop Culture.

  • http://hillaryonwriting.blogspot.com Hillary Manton Lodge

    Richard Harris would have been my first pick, but as he’s passed on, my money’s on Michael Gambon.

    Poor Michael, hanging out in Richard’s shadow.

    Although no one does “taciturn” like Alan Rickman.

    Note to zalm: props for the Ewan MacGregor line.

  • Lon

    If you are looking at someone who can do or play anything, wouldn’t that be Daniel Day Lewis :)

  • http://www.cvfilm.nl Obi-Cus Kenobus

    And maybe… Ben Kingsley?

  • http://filmchatblog.blogspot.com/ Peter T Chattaway

    FWIW, Rush co-starred in a previous Le Carre adaptation, The Tailor of Panama. His son was played by a wee lad named Daniel Radcliffe, who went on to star in some wizard movie or other.

  • http://www.lookingcloser.org closerlooker

    Ooooh. I like that! Rush is Australian, but he could easily play a Brit. And he needs a project worthy of his formidable talents. Best idea I’ve heard yet, Bart!

  • http://www.cvfilm.nl Obi-Cus Kenobus

    Geoffrey Rush.

  • Michael K.

    I think Matt Damon already nailed that role in “The Good Shepherd.”

  • http://www.nickalexander.com Nick

    Hmmm…. do I smell a comeback film for Ned Beatty? Paul Dooley?
    Or perhaps the star at the helm of the top-grossing film of the summer? (At least, until Transformers:ROTFL took it over). That’s right… ED ASNER.

  • http://twitter.com/zalm zalm

    If it’s a prequel, I think they’re contractually obligated to give the role to Ewan McGregor.