I told you earlier about how many blog posts come out of our casual conversations within the team. This is yet another one.
Being the two huge Harry Potter fans that we are, Bookworm and I are talking about the NEW Harry Potter play with now adult Harry & Co. and focusing on Harry’s son Albus Severus the other day. And just because we really want our favorite actor to have a part in our favorite fiction, I come up with the idea that, being red head and all, why not Damian play the adult Ron Weasley? And Bookworm comes up with a much better idea that I will not spoil here – she should write on that Harry Potter character she believes Damian would kill in! So… you get the idea… Going deep in conversation about roles we think Damian Lewis would be PERFECT for is a favorite pastime in our team and our typical joke is if it had been up to us, the poor guy would have to run from set to set and set to stage and back for 24/7 and not have a minute to spare for his family or for his sleep or for himself… So… Thank God it is not up to us!
But we just can’t help it since it is so thrilling to anticipate exciting developments in his already bright career and dream about characters that he would brilliantly bring to life… And, hey, some dreams just come true!
I read Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies before the BBC production was in works and I was completely fascinated and quite a bit obsessed about the book. It was not another “juicy” Tudor novel. Not even close. Wolf Hall was dark. Wolf Hall was smart. Wolf Hall was utterly political.Wolf Hall had some of the best lines I ever read in a book — and I read A LOT. Moreover, this dark and political book had the BEST sense of humor I ever saw in years in a book. I was just blown away by Hilary Mantel’s prose. And, as I always did, I assigned actors to characters in the book… And, who else could I cast for my all-time favorite historical monster Henry other than Damian Lewis? Damian would just be PERFECT as Henry thanks to his immense talent to give a real monster some compelling human touch. So, you can (and maybe cannot) imagine my overexcitement as I found about the production in early spring 2014 and then heard BBC’s grand cast announcement in early May. Haha that moment I found out about Damian being cast as Henry is probably the only moment I thought about calling Alex Gansa to thank him for killing off Brody 🙂
There are currently two roles that we all have been frantically talking and speculating about: The first one is, thanks to never-ending rumors since last summer, the most famous British spy of all times, James Bond. We know it’s a rumor, and probably not true.Yet, most of us think Damian would be the perfect Bond and bring some real depth to the character that no other actor could. However, as I have already told you earlier here I am a bit torn about Damian playing Bond and, yes, just for selfish reasons! I would prefer to see him as a flawed, vulnerable, real character than as a superhero even if it’s a superhero at its most human…
…which brings me to the second role about which we have been having endless conversations… There is a new Steve McQueen biopic in development, and we just cannot imagine a better actor than Damian Lewis to bring this complicated real-life character to life on big screen. It seems the fans agree, too, given that JaniaJania’s compelling case for WHY Damian Lewis should play Steve McQueen has already become one of our most, if not the most, popular articles on the blog!
And, hey, we never limit our imagination to present time when roles are concerned! We are so set about what roles we want Damian to play that we even plan the later years! 😀 For example, I would really love to see Damian as Professor Higgins singing “By George, she’s got it! BY GEORGE, SHE’S GOT IT!” in My Fair Lady. And, my lovely partner JaniaJania is dying to see him play King Lear, before he retires; in fact, she believes he absolutely must do Lear and I quote her: “Even if I’m not around to see it, the world absolutely needs Damian Lewis to perform King Lear.” My dear partner, I really hope Damian does Lear, and we are all around as senior citizens with “teenager” beating hearts and go see his Lear on stage! Can you imagine?
And while we let our imagination run wild about what roles we would love Damian to play now or later, a little bit of research yields some FUN facts about the roles our favorite actor says he would love to play or have played.
I told you about the wonderful written Q&A with Damian Lewis in American Buffalo programme booklet earlier.
Ms. Lindsay Whitaker asks: “Which role would you like to play but would never get cast in?”
Damian goes: “Cleopatra.”
Who knew? 🙂
And yeah, Damian, they would probably never offer you the role… But, hey, there is always second best! 😀 Even if you can’t play Cleopatra, you can always play Mark Antony and make us HAPPY!
Damian Lewis, in fact, did a very close second best this fall at the prestigious New Yorker Festival — in case you missed it, you can see our detailed festival coverage here. The second best I am talking about was the first public reading for Lawrence Wright’s wonderful NEW play Cleo with Damian Lewis and Lily Rabe as Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor scandalously falling in love on the set of Cleopatra! In other words, we have seen Damian Lewis reading as Richard Burton playing Mark Antony 😀 And, I doubt one can get closer to Cleopatra than that! If you want to find out more about this wonderful play reading, JaniaJania did an excellent review here.
Now… We have no idea how these things work… Lawrence Wright tweets there will be one more draft and then he will keep his fingers crossed… probably for the play to go into production. I don’t know why but maybe because I know Lily Rabe has close connections to Public Theater, and we have seen her so many times in delightful Shakespeare in the Park productions over the years, I just feel like Cleo could be a delightful addition to Public’s already FANTASTIC repertoire. And I can totally see Damian Lewis and Lily Rabe storm the stage as Dick and Liz. Oh, please please make it happen!
When it comes to stage roles, Damian Lewis and Helen McCrory have repeatedly said they wanted to do theater together again — the couple met at a play called Five Gold Rings at the Almeida in 2003 — and, any stage project would, of course, be no less than epic with these two brilliantly intense stage actors! Helen once said in an interview they were considering to do some version of The Taming Of The Shrew either on stage or film, while Damian talked about how suitable it would be for them to play Beatrice and Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing: “It’s how she talks to me anyway – rudely and dismissively.” Ha! Then it seems these two would not even need to act then 🙂
What about Damian’s dream TV role? Now, we have his full confession on tape on that 🙂 Damian makes it open and clear on The Hollywood Reporter Drama Actors Full Uncensored Interview when asked about the one TV role he wanted to play:
This has, in fact, led to a recent debate at our dinner table. I love Jon Hamm. I even told you earlier here that he is THE reason I met Damian Lewis for the first time on TV back in 2012. And I have always thought Hamm has given us the PERFECT Draper. And, my husband claims Damian would have brought more subtlety to the character and even made him more likable despite the fact that Draper is a true jerk in many ways. I don’t know. But it’s probably true. When I think about Draper’s problematic childhood and his inner demons accompanied with his complicated relations with women, the character sounds almost like a McQueen character, the kind of flawed guy Damian Lewis was born to play!
Finally… When asked about the single role from cinematic history that he would most like to have played in an interview with Epigram, University of Bristol Independent Student Newspaper, Damian goes:
“Ben Braddock in the Graduate.”
Oh… And here’s to you Mr. Lewis 🙂