But I thought it would be fun to recast The Shining with my dream cast. Not that I would ever want to see a remake of that classic (and quite honestly I don't care for the Stephen King-endorsed TV version from 1997 - partially because I detest Steven Weber in nearly everything), but since nothing seems to be sacred I figured I may as well re-imagine it myself.
And since The Shining takes place during winter and showcases a pretty nasty snowstorm, it fits within the realm of winter horror.
So here goes:
Jack Torrance: Paul Giamatti - It's only natural that I'd pick Giamatti for the main role, as he is one of my favorite actors and has the serious acting chops to take this role in the various directions that it wanders to. He can play a quirky writer, we've established that with both American Splendor and Sideways. And I know he can act like a total nut-job (see Shoot 'Em Up, John Dies at the End). So I can see him going from mild mannered father who likes a drink or two to crazed, off-the-wagon psychopath with murderous intent and a crazed look in his eyes. Like so:
It was hard for me to decide just who looks pathetic enough to pull off the emotionally abused and wildly confused Wendy Torrance. And then after this year's Golden Globes it came to me... Anne Hathaway!
She has just the right combination of frumpy and bewildered that this character dictates. After all, Shelley Duvall owned that role. (You probably would too after working with Stanley Kubrick and his countless script changes and hundreds of re-takes.) Anne Hathaway has kind of come into her own these last few years and she really says Wendy to me. She can look disheveled, chaotic, and wracked with fear better than most.
Danny. Now this one was tough, because of course I'm not too familiar with child actors. But after perusing the internet a bit, this little guy (and his bright blue eyes) jumped out at me. Currently Benjamin Stockham is starring as one of the president's children on the television comedy 1600 Penn. I'm fairly certain he could pull off that 'deer in the headlights' gaze that Danny is so famous for. Only this time around, the stare will come from blue, not brown eyes. I can almost hear him now "Redrum! Redrum! Redrum!'...
Dick Halloran. I had a myriad of choices on this one. Hard to nail down. I thought....Denzel? Sam Jackson? Even Morgan Freeman? But then I thought... Don Cheadle! Yes! I love nearly everything Cheadle does and can definitely see him interacting with our Danny and discussing the SHINE over a bowl of ice cream (but we're making that ice cream strawberry in my movie because well....I like it better).
Sure, Freeman would have been closer in age to the original Scatman Crothers when he played the Overlook cook, but there's just something about Cheadle that says yes. And I can absolutely see him chilling out in his bedroom in Florida with perhaps a poster of Jackie Brown behind him. Oh yes, he'll even put up a good fight with our Jack....who knows how it will turn out. Maybe I'll change the ending and have him driving Danny down the Sidewinder in the snowcat. Witness the coolness:
When casting Delbert Grady, I had to choose someone whose demeanor is relatively humdrum and monotone. The original caretaker, Grady's part in the film is to guide Jack to his inevitable poor decisions by relaying the history of the Overlook and placing those ideas oh-so-gently into Jack's head. So I need someone who looks that part - unassuming yet determined to have things go according to plan. Who better than Kevin Spacey? He can play the restrained everyman next door pretty damn well (see: American Beauty), and yet has an edge that can be quietly horrifying (see: Seven). I like him in this role. It suits him.
And who better than one of the best character actors in the biz' to play our loyal bartender, Lloyd. Yep, Steve Buscemi. Lloyd is always at the ready with the Jack Daniels to help ol' Jack see the error of his ways and help him get drunk enough to take an ax and hunt down his wife and young son. Lloyd won't take money from Jack, we know that - and I can absolutely see Buscemi embodying the role of the laid-back barman - though I'm thinking he might have a touch more sass than Joe Turkel. But that would make things more interesting, don't you think?
In the small role of Danny's doctor (who was literally nameless), I'm going to put Mary Steenburgen. She always seems sincere yet she frightens me for some reason. Maybe it's because she's married to Ted Danson - that would scare anyone. Yet here she is - asking Danny just who the hell Tony is, perhaps even mimicking his finger acrobatics.
As for the Grady daughters (who weren't actually twins, which is a common misconception), I have no idea who would be creepy enough to play the girls....but here's a thought....
|"Come and play with us, Danny......."|
So there you have it. I know there are a few other very minor roles (like a few other Overlook employees and the ranger at the station) but for the most part, I think we got the major ones covered.
What do you think? Yay or Nay? Who would you cast?