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Report: Charlie Hunnam to Play King Arthur in Guy Ritchie’s KNIGHTS OF THE ROUNDTABLE

Guy Ritchie’s long gestating movie based on Arthurian legends seems to have found its King Arthur in Sons of Anarchy and Pacific Rim actor Charlie Hunnam. According to the original report from Deadline, this movie will be Warner Bros.’ first entry in a proposed six movie series, with the working title Knights of the Roundtable: King Arthur. Charlie Hunnam apparently won the part over Superman himself Henry Cavill,  as well as the Terminator reboot’s Jai Courtney. Hunnam was originally cast in the upcoming movie version of 50 Shades of Grey, and probably dropped out of the project at the last minute once he remembered what Showgirls did to Elizabeth Berkeley’s career.

If Charlie Hunnam agrees to sign on the dotted line for this movie,  it’ll be the second time working with his Pacific Rim co-star Idris Elba. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Elba is  in talks to play Bedivere, Arthur’s father’s right-hand man, who will eventually teach Arthur how to lead an army. Variety reports that Elizabeth Olsen is in talks to play the female lead, which many assume to be Guinevere, but could just as easily be Arthur’s sister Morgan le Fay.

Movies based on the Arthurian legends have been hit or miss at the box office over the years, leaning more towards “miss.” In 2004, Disney attempted a more gritty and realistic take on the Arthurian myths, simply titled King Arthur, ditching all the fantasy aspects in an effort to tell “the real story.” Problem was that no one, not even historians, knows what the “real story” of King Arthur is, and almost everyone can agree that the myth of Arthur is probably a lot more interesting than whatever the reality was. There was also First Knight, starring Richard Gere and Sean Connery: yet another flop. Arguably the only really good Arthurian films of the last several decades have been John Boorman’s excellent and quasi-Shakespearean Excalibur, which starred a young Patrick Stewart and Liam Neeson, and, of course, Monty Python and the Holy Grail. One thing’s for sure: no matter how Guy Ritchie’s movie turns out, it’ll almost certainly be better and more successful than Quest for Camelot.

 

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1 comment

  • As someone who’s done a master’s degree in Arthurian Literature, I’m wondering how good the story itself will be throughout the series. Will it be an adaptation from a known work? Will it be an ensemble of concepts and/or ideas from such traditional texts? Or will it be something that utterly disregards the foundation of the Arthurian legend? There are a select handful of Arthurian flicks out there that make justice to the legend’s legacy (John Boor’s Excalibur, Robert Bresson’s Lancelot du Lac), but most of them fail altogether in this regard. Let’s hope Hollywood can bring us something worthy of the name King Arthur this time.