2013 is looking up to a great year of film. This month has already got me stuck for what to see, as everything looks good, from the noir detective thriller, Broken City, to the visually amazing Oz. And there are so many more. The year hardly falters either, as we have Marvel’s next round of superhero blockbusters to catch up on and not to mention some sequels to some of the hottest movies of the last few years. However, the actual movie aside, let’s focus on some of the casting choices Hollywood has made. Some of them seem spot-on and I cannot wait to see if those actors live up to those expectations. Below are three of the many actors I am highly anticipated about watching this year.
3 – JAMES MCAVOY – TRANCE
‘Trance’ is shaping up to be a good movie, with or without James McAvoy. The plot may seem a little corny ‘gangster use a hypnotist to try and get answers from a thief who has lost his memory’, but at the helm is Director Danny Boyle, fresh from creating the masterpiece of an opening ceremony at the Olympics. I have loved most of Boyle’s work, so I am sure ‘Trance’ will not disappoint.
But back to McAvoy. I really like this actor, mainly because he is the perfect example of a humble British actor, rising to fame. It is hard to remember that he first became known for a bit role in the early seasons of ‘Shameless’ on Channel 4 in the UK. He rose into films with quirky British Indies, like ‘Starter for Ten’, but out of nowhere, he was suddenly cast in the fast-paced action thriller, ‘Wanted’. It was a risky casting choice, as McAvoy hardly strikes the audience as the stereotypical action hero. Even the unlikely action hero needs to look the part for it to remain believable (look at Bruce Willis in the early Die Hards). However, whether you think he nailed it or not, things definitely started looking good for the actor, as he was cast, soon after, in ‘Welcome to the Punch’ and ‘X-Men: First Class’.
‘Trance’ is looking like it shall be a good mix of action thriller and drama, so we should get McAvoy at his best yet. The trailer certainly suggests that he shall deliver and it seems like the kind of mental decline that an actor longs for. I have big expectations for this movie and I hope McAvoy does not disappoint.
2 – ROBERT DOWNEY JR. – IRON MAN 3
I wasn’t sure if I should include Downey Jr. here, because, let’s be honest, we already know he is going to ace the role yet again.
However, I ended up including him, because Iron Man 3 looks like it is going to take a darker turn, which is something I have been looking for an excuse to write about for a while now. I love the Iron Man movies, as I knew little about the character, and Robert Downey Jr’s performance made me instantly fall in love with him. He is fun, smart and rich – pretty much the kind of person every bloke wants to be. However, despite his wonderful performance, I have always felt that something is missing. In the comics, I remember Stark being afflicted with a crippling addiction to alcohol. It had always seemed like an important part of the character, but Marvel were keeping the films so light-hearted it looked like it was something we were never going to get a chance to explore.
I have always wondered how the movie would jump to the dark side (Pepper’s death, perhaps?), but the writers did the smart and easy thing and just used the ending of Avengers Assemble to get to the dark bits, meaning that we skip all that exposition rubbish and get to the good stuff. I am looking forward to this side of Iron Man’s character and I am sure Robert Downey Jr. will do the role justice. I am also confident that, despite the dark depths Iron Man 3 will take, Downey Jr. will not keep his performance totally devoid of humour.
One more thing: this movie also means that Robert Downey Jr’s contract for playing Iron Man as run out. Will this be his last time playing the amazing Tony Stark? I am sure that Marvel will do everything in their power to sign Downey Jr up with another contract, but maybe the actor just wants to move on. Whatever the case, be braced for the fact that this could be the last we see of this face for Tony Stark.
1 – BENEDICT CUMBERBATCH – STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS
But the guy I am most looking forward to in action this year is the terrific Benedict Cumberbatch. He is another fantastic gem of British TV and thanks to the success of BBC’s Sherlock, he has been scooped up by several top directors. I was worried that his performance as Sherlock would ruin the actor, as it used to be fairly hard to imagine him as anyone else. I was worried the actor would get typecast all the time. Thankfully, despite the enigma behind who he is actually playing, it looks like we are going to get see a new, more nefarious side to the actor.
There isn’t even much to go on. All we have are a few short clips of the actor in action and that’s it. However, seeing as the entire point of the trailer seemed to be showing off the fact that Cumberbatch is the villain in this movie, we can assume that he is going to be a major selling point for the film. I thought Eric Bana was great as the last antagonist, but I still have no qualms that Cumberbatch will emerge the greater enemy to the Starship Enterprise.
And as a concluding note, two out of three of these actors played Sherlock Holmes. Coincidence? Well, the answer is elementary, dear reader.