The Prince of Nothing (Film)

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« on: June 03, 2013, 03:04:20 pm »
Quote from: Jorge
No, sadly not yet confirmed on IMDB (someday!)

Here are currently popular actors and actresses that I can see filling the roles (click on the actor names to see a picture):

Kellhus - Chris Hemsworth, but basically you just need to cast an Aryan pretty-boy with some range.
Maithanet - Ditto.
Esmenet - this one was hard... you need a skilled actress who can do 'used up prostitute', 'erudite concubine' and 'empress of the empire'. I'm going with Salma Hayek.
Serwe - Hayden Panettiere
Cnaiur - Dalip Singh
Drusas Achmian - Erick Avari, although you'd need someone to play him as a boy and as a teenager in Atyersus.
Ikurei Comphas -Jonathan Rhys Meyers, again an Aryan pretty boy, but someone who can pull of "narcisistic psychopath" with no problem.
Krijates Xinemus - Ashraf Barhom (he was good in Agora and Coriolanus)
Eleazaras - Donald Southerland (come on, admit it, it would be badass!)
Iyokus - McCauley Culkin (he looks like he's been hitting the chanv pretty hard recently)

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« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2013, 03:04:30 pm »
Quote from: sologdin
ha.  nice.

i always picture cnaiur as richard kiel, though he's a bit old now for he role.

dicaprio as saubon.  synthese head is steve O, when he shaves his eyebrows &c off.

xerius - tim curry.  malowebi, keith david, please?

if tony jay were still alive, he could voice the no-god.

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« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2013, 03:04:38 pm »
Quote from: Auriga
My ideal cast would look something like this, just off the top of my head:

Achamian - a classic "unwilling protagonist" role. Any older actor who's good at weary anti-hero characters. Gary Oldman in a black beard would be an obvious choice.
Kellhus - not an easy one, since the role is a pretty complicated one; it needs the solemn aura and awe-inspiring gravitas of a Biblical prophet, the capacity to be both evil and very likeable at the same time, and most importantly, it needs a lot of meta-acting. Kellhus himself is a chameleon who is acting half the time. Michael Fassbender, who is a pretty decent actor (his slightly android-looking face is only a plus here), could probably pull off the role. Although I'd choose someone less famous.
Esmenet - again, a harder role for an actress, since she goes from "worn-out hooker" to "empress regent". Needs a big range of skills. Monica Bellucci, if she was a more fluent English-speaker, would be ideal for the older Esmenet in the later books.
CnaiŁr - this one should be more about body language and menacing looks, than the actual dialogue of the character. The descriptions of CnaiŁr remind me of Conan the Barbarian. But it's really not a role for a Hollywood actor, since he should look hard-faced, weatherbeaten, and about ten years older than his actual age due to harsh outdoor living on the steppe. This is a role that needs a convincingly brutal man who has been hardened by life - a former prison guard or military veteran or lifelong oil-drill worker could do the role more justice.
SerwŽ - not a hard role, since she is an eternal doormat and victim of those around her. (In the story, her actions are mostly reactions to whatever Kellhus and CnaiŁr are doing to her). Emily Browning, with her wide pale eyes and vulnerable look, would be my pick.
Saubon - someone with classic "Prince Charming" handsome looks and an aura of authority, a stereotypical chivalric hero at the first glance who's actually full of insecurity and self-loathing. Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, who's done similar roles, would be perfect for this one.
Elešzaras - as the OP already said, the most awesome actor for the part would be Donald Sutherland. It's one of those classic "old supervillain" roles, the sort of guest role which just needs to be filled by an old British stage veteran with an IMDB database longer than the rest of the cast put together.

Aurang - the face of the half-bird creature would be mostly CGI, obviously. But the disturbingly androgynous voice of Rosalinda Celentano (who has already played Satan) would add a hundred times more menace to the character.

Soundtrack should be done by Geinoh Yamashirogumi. Their haunting soundtrack for "Akira" was perfect; just give them medieval European instruments instead of Japanese ones, and they'll do the job.

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« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2013, 03:04:51 pm »
Quote from: Ajokli
Kellhus


Maithanet


Esmenet


Serwe


Cnaiur


Drusas Achmian


Ikurei Comphas


Krijates Xinemus


Eleazaras


Iyokus



Director


Easily 10/10 Movie of the Century. I'm currently on standby awaiting offers.

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« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2013, 03:05:04 pm »
Quote from: lockesnow
I've recently been picturing Achamian as Chiwetel Ejiofor.

Kellhus I've kinda got Michael Fassbender in mind, but moreso.

Cnaiur I've always pictured as a Chen Chang type, from Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon .

Esmenet, I'd go with Kerry Washington, Halle Berry kind of thing.

Serwe probably Amanda Seyfried.

If I were casting this I'd love to play up possible visual contrasts. I'd want Kellhus and Achamian to be different races (obviously this would apply with Esmenet too and would provide an additional contrast to Serwe).  This would make it fun to layer in other inversions and subversions.  The text already actively and deliberately undermines genre expectations, I'd love to go all out with the casting to complement those themes since fantasy films/tv typically are 100% lily-white.  an Asian would work great here since the typical American fiction treatment of asian males is to emasculate them (unless they're a martial arts expert, which Cnaiur is not, the white-guy-hero-kellhus is the martial arts expert).  The names work with this as well, Esmenet, Cnaiur and Achamian all have 'forrin' sounding names.  And while Kellhus and Serwe aren't easy to swallow, they're more familiar, I think, so make the whitest names the whitest characters.

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« Reply #5 on: June 03, 2013, 03:05:13 pm »
Quote from: Callan S.
Well, in terms of skin colour, with the books that have a face on them, who's on the cover of TDTCB, WP, TTT, JE & WLW?

I've assumed TTT has Akka on the front (to me the guy looks hard at first - but if you look closer at the eye, he instead looks worried. Amazing artist! Amazing...). Anyway, he appears to be white skinned?

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« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2013, 03:05:22 pm »
Quote from: Ajokli
Quote from: lockesnow
An Asian would work great here since the typical American fiction treatment of asian males is to emasculate them (unless they're a martial arts expert, which Cnaiur is not, the white-guy-hero-kellhus is the martial arts expert).

Interesting you would say that because I feel that's the case with the caucasian American male. Then again, all I watch  on TV is Modern Family  :)

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« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2013, 03:05:29 pm »
Quote from: Jorge
Achamian is Ketyai. He is dark-skinned, black haired, and brown-eyed. I picture him as vaguely Arabic or dark-skinned Indian type. In PoN he is kinda fat and about 40, whereas in TAE he's thin and 60ish.

I really hope he disintegrates the Nazi asshole at the end of the book.

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« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2013, 03:05:36 pm »
Quote from: Jorge
Ajokli, I don't know how you came to picture Kellhus like that... but he is obviously very capable of being disarming, funny and congenial, so maybe you're closer to the truth than the rest of us.

Bucemi is goddamn perfect for Iyokus.

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« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2013, 03:05:43 pm »
Quote from: Auriga
Just a few random comments:

Quote from: lockesnow
Kellhus I've kinda got Michael Fassbender in mind, but moreso.
Fassbender is also pretty close how I imagined Kellhus. He's a rather strange-looking actor, with his clichť handsome face and high cheekbones and row of perfect white teeth. With those looks, and his slightly repressed mannerisms, the guy was great as the android in "Prometheus". And he'd also fit well as Kellhus, a perfected human being who is mentally an alien.



Quote
Esmenet, I'd go with Kerry Washington, Halle Berry kind of thing.
Black but not too black, in other words.  ;)

IMO, it's silly to insert token blacks where they don't exist in the source material. I don't see the point in having these visual contrasts, just for the sake of contrasts. Neither does in make sense in the fictional universe if a couple Ketyai people happen to be black (without this ever being commented on), for no particular reason. It's just gratuitous. If there really was a need for more blacks in a hypothetical "Second Apocalypse" movie, I'd enlarge the role of Zsoronga or something.

I'd cast Esmenet based on her book description, as pale and black-haired. The name sounds a bit Old Testament in my ears for some reason (and I think Bakker even said the Three Seas were based on that world), so Esmenet should look like she could pass in Biblical Israel. I'd pick an actress from the Middle-East, Greece, South Italy, thereabouts. The middle-aged Monica Bellucci as she portrayed Mary Magdalene is pretty much how I imagined Esmenet:



Quote
an Asian would work great here since the typical American fiction treatment of asian males is to emasculate them (unless they're a martial arts expert, which Cnaiur is not, the white-guy-hero-kellhus is the martial arts expert).
Right on. IMO, Cnaiur is the only character where a "race lift" would actually work. The names of the Scylvendi all sound Turkic to me, and their savage steppe-warrior culture is very inspired by Mongols, so it wouldn't be a stretch to give them an Asian look as well. If anything, it just adds to their "alienness" in the Three Seas. I also agree that it would be a fun role-reversal if an Asian guy was given the most violent and testosterone-filled role, since that totally fucks with the American audience's expectations.

It shouldn't be just any Asian actor, though. Cnaiur should look brutal, crude, weatherbeaten and prematurely aged, a hardened look which is light-years away from the typical Hollywood Asian.

Quote
The names work with this as well, Esmenet, Cnaiur and Achamian all have 'forrin' sounding names.  And while Kellhus and Serwe aren't easy to swallow, they're more familiar, I think, so make the whitest names the whitest characters.
"Esmenet" sounds Biblical, "Cnaiur" sounds Turkic, "Achamian" sounds vaguely Greco-Roman and about as furrin as "Kellhus" does.

"SerwŽ" is the only obvious Tolkien-inspired fantasy name where I get a "lily-white" mental image. (Which the character also is.)

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« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2013, 03:05:52 pm »
Quote from: Auriga
A few ideas on the non-human characters:

Nonmen are not hard to put onscreen. They should be huge and marble-skinned, with the bodies of godlike Greco-Roman statues. Superhuman muscled bodies. The features in their stern faces should be very harsh and clearly-defined, coarse to the point of looking non-human. The god-aliens in "Prometheus" look like my mental image of them:



Compare with:



I can imagine the Ishroi would look like superhuman Greek gods when they stride into battle and annihilate their enemies by the thousands. Cleric's battle scenes would be pretty damn impressive.


As for the Sranc, their chalk-white Nonman faces shouldn't be male. Not modeled on the features of Nonmen, but on those of Nonwomen. It just adds to their menace if they are creepily androgynous creatures, who have male genitals and grinning almost-female faces. A "stark beauty", as Bakker put it in the first book. In a (very hypothetical) movie, I'd imagine the androgynous Sranc faces to look a bit like this HR Giger painting:



Which is based on a real-life woman, Li Tobler:


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« Reply #11 on: June 03, 2013, 03:06:24 pm »
Quote from: Ajokli
Quote from: Jorge
Ajokli, I don't know how you came to picture Kellhus like that... but he is obviously very capable of being disarming, funny and congenial, so maybe you're closer to the truth than the rest of us.

Bucemi is goddamn perfect for Iyokus.

To be honest, I was messing around with the majority of them. I'd rather not have a film/show made at all, it usually kills the imagination for me.  Buscemi would be a great Iyokus, though.

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« Reply #12 on: June 03, 2013, 03:06:32 pm »
Quote from: The Sharmat
I share Auriga's thoughts. Including about the Prometheus aliens. As soon as I saw that guy in the theater I thought "Oh, hey. Nonman!" I love your idea for the Sranc as well. Imagining that inhumanly beautiful Giger face on a grotesque body...leering and baying...creepy image.

I'm gonna go against the whole purpose of the thread though by suggesting that this film would best be done as an animated miniseries. And no that doesn't mean a Japanese inspired anime. Shame western animation is largely dead.

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« Reply #13 on: June 03, 2013, 03:06:39 pm »
Quote from: Francis Buck
I also think this series would be served well by animation. Possibly even CGI animation, along the lines of something Blizzard would do, though less cartoonish.

But if I was going to cast a live-action adaptation, I think I'd go with mostly unknowns, even though in my head I do have weird pictures of the characters. I've always imagined Achamian as Ray Winstone for some reason.



I can definitely see Fassbender as Kellhus though. I also picture Conphas as Ryan Gosling, god knows why. I actually think he could play the part perfectly, though he looks like nothing like the description. Cnaiur I just picture as a real-life version of Nathan Explosion from Metalocalypse. Weird, I know.

Steve Buscemi as Iyokus is brilliant.

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« Reply #14 on: June 03, 2013, 03:06:45 pm »
Quote from: Auriga
Ray Winstone isn't a bad choice for Achamian, although I tend to imagine him as a more scrawny and bookish type (so I put down Gary Oldman as my pick), sorta like Gandalf's younger loser brother.

A few more comments on Nonman visuals, just because I'm bored this Tuesday night and enjoy brainstorming:

Quote from: The Sharmat
I share Auriga's thoughts. Including about the Prometheus aliens. As soon as I saw that guy in the theater I thought "Oh, hey. Nonman!"
Same here, although it was a re-read of WLW that brought the aliens from Ridley Scott's new movie to mind when I read Cleric's description. The comparison between the Nonmen and the Prometheus god-aliens is a pretty apt one, not just visually but also thematically.

The Nonmen should have the superhuman bodies of Greek gods and heroes, but they shouldn't all look exactly the same (although humans can't always tell). The different "castes" of Nonmen would have different body types as well. Nil'giccas would have a more "regal figure", tall and evenly muscled all over, with an almost "mathematical" perfect physique. This statue of Doryphoros is an example of this body ideal. OTOH, the typical member of the Ishroi caste would look different and have an upper body like a mountain of muscle, the same buff bodybuilder physique as the Hercules statue. As for the Nonwomen (before they all died, obviously), I imagine they'd have a tall and curvy "alpha female" physique, a bit like the Venus of Arles, but with bald heads.

Quote
I love your idea for the Sranc as well. Imagining that inhumanly beautiful Giger face on a grotesque body...leering and baying...creepy image.
Much of the Consult stuff is rather Giger-ish if you try to visualize it. The surreal combo of the bio-mechanical and the morbidly sexual is a HR Giger speciality. If anyone could design the Consult visuals and put them onscreen, it'd be him.

(It really makes the Sranc more disturbing if they have serene, harmonious, almost-female faces. Also, giving them the faces of Nonwomen makes sense as psychological terrorism against the Nonmen, since that's what the Sranc were invented for in the first place.)

Phew, that was a pretty long post.