Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Casting Call: The Joes Part 2

As promised Cody and I have put together our rag tag bunch of heroes that we hope will someday, make it to the silver screen. Cody will also be featuring his list of new Cobra recruits in a solo post, very soon, but for now let's get to our new 6 for GI Joe 2!

Nicky Lee - Rank: Sergeant (E-5) Codename: Tunnel Rat (by Jeff)
This guy would be an interesting addition to the Joes given that he is not your typical big muscle bound hero that saves the day by charging headlong into a mess of Cobra forces. This is the guy they send in covertly either over the fence or, if Tunnel Rat had his way, under it. His primary job is explosive ordinance disposal, but he's also apparently a combat engineer. This is the guy who activates your plan B when plan A has gone to shit. He's short but don't let his height fool you he's wicked smart and he was trained by the best, the Rangers. Honestly I really don't have that much info about him, I don't really recall reading many of the comics with him involved in the storyline. Although I have extensive knowledge of his character from the G.I. Joe animated feature from the 80's. Tunnel Rat is of Asian descent and seems to have a knack for getting into trouble. He was sort of goofy, almost the class clown, which I think could work in the film but he would obviously need to be someone who can go from humorous to clutch handyman without much hesitation. I've thought about this one for a while and honestly I only have one good candidate, his name, Aaron Yoo. The guy has made the rounds in big movie fare from Disturbia, 21, Nick and Nora and Freddy Krueger. The guy can be genuinely funny without it turning into a caricature. But I do have a wildcard if they were intending to make Tunnel Rat a bit more of a badass guy who slinks through the tunnels and leads the dirty missions that other Joes may wish to avoid. Ian Anthony Dale, in my mind would be that guy. I've been watching the Event on NBC and I really like his secret double agent character. Not sure if the guy can bring the funny, but I would say that if you wanted to elevate Tunnel Rat to a more heroic leading role. Dale would probably be your guy.
Ian Anthony Dale

Aaron Yoo

Wayne R. Sneedon - Rank: Command Sergeant Major (E-9) Codename: Beach Head (by Jeff)
For some reason I have always had a deep affinity for this tough as nails drill Sergeant, not always sure why, although I always thought he just looked like a total badass with his green mask and bulging biceps. This is a guy you wouldn't want to cross, seriously, yes I know his mask was bright green but it worked. Beach Head is the guy who whips the Joes into shape, with drills and combat tactics. This guy is extremely smart and a excellent tactician. This is pretty well established on the G.I. Joe cartoon from the 80's. The comics implies that although he is a consummate professional he tends to have some contempt for Protocol. This is a guy who leaps headlong into a mission without much consultation with the higher ups, which apparently has hindered his ability to rise further in the ranks. Now for the film it would be tough for an actor to have to wear that mask the entire film, I mean you already have one Snake Eyes. I assume he would only wear it into battle, but the question is who could play this tough talking tough guy from the mean streets of Auburn, Alabama. If only Steve "Stone Cold" Austin were just a bit younger, he would be the perfect Beach Head. So my next thought would be someone slightly younger but still old enough to be a drill instructor and I came across Kevin Durand. The guy has made a habit out of playing slimy assholes, but there is no denying he's a bad ass. Watch his soldier of fortune on Lost and tell me that guy didn't make you almost wet your pants. But he can play a good guy too as displayed in Robin Hood next to Russell Crowe. I think the guy is deserving of a big screen action role and what better to play a no-nonsense Southerner in G.I. Joe. If you need an example of his Southern twang look no further than 3:10 to Yuma from a few years ago.

Lonzo R. Wilkinson - Rank: Sgt. Major (E-9) Codename: Stalker (by Jeff)
Stalker is technically the first Black G.I. Joe, he makes appearances in the original cartoon but is usually only there, unfortunately, to fill the color quotient. It was in the comics that Stalker was allowed to shine as a leader of the Joes and an effective and lethal member of this elite squad. In the comics he came up through the ranks with his best friend Snake-Eyes and makes it near the top as the second in command to General Hawk and is heavily involved in recruitment and dangerous missions. This high command diminishes once Duke takes over the squad but he is still integral in tough missions and is usually placed in the thick of it with his good buddy Snake-Eyes. Now if I had a time machine Carl Weathers in my mind would be the perfect Stalker but Carl is pushing into his late 60's so that ain't gonna work. Now there are quite a few guys I can think of that could pull off this tough guy from the streets of Detroit who turned from his life of hustling to join the U.S. Army. After doing a thorough search I feel pretty confident that Stalker would be best in the hands of Anthony Mackie. The guy can act and he's comfortable playing soldier from the Hurt Locker to Eagle Eye. He also has street cred playing Tupac Shakur and a tough boxer from Million Dollar Baby. Plus I can see him sporting the beret, not an easy feat for anyone.

Ettienne R. Lafitte - Rank: Gunnery Sgt. USMC (E-7) Codename: Gung-Ho (by Jeff)

Gung Ho, in a sense, is G.I. Joe, this guy just always seemed to me to be the face of the Joes a tough bruiser but kind and heroic. He's been a staple on the show and the comic book since the beginning. Used as the muscle and comic relief on the show ( no one apparently wanted to eat his Gumbo), but in the comic he isn't really given the storylines his character probably deserves. He's usually just part of the Joe squads, peppering the story arc with his humor. He is the first Marine on G.I. Joe and he deserves to play a role in the next G.I. Joe movie in a pivotal way. Now if Steve Austin could speak a cajun accent he also would be a perfect fit for Gung Ho, but again he's too old. Honestly I'm going to take a chance, this guy is a great actor, but I'm not entirely sure he can pull off a southern accent much less a Cajun one. But still he can fit the look, Tom Hardy. He played a great con man in Inception and an even greater bad ass loon in Bronson. But I think he could bring something interesting to Gung Ho. I mean the guy is going to be Bane in the next movie, so someone with some authority, other than me, thinks he can play a muscled bad ass.

Courtney Kreiger - Rank: Specialist (E-4) Codename: Cover Girl (by Cody)
I felt strongly that we should have included Cover Girl in our original G.I. Joe Casting Call two years back, but it had already been decided that Jeff would take the Joes and I would take Cobra. And obviously, Cover Girl did not make Jeff's cut. I can understand why. Of the original three Joe ladies she never had the screen time of a Scarlett or a Lady Jaye who always seemed to be at the forefront, always involved in the most important, most exciting missions. Of course we all know why, don't we? It was because they were shacking up with their superior officers! Cover Girl was always her own woman, never tied down. She was brassy but flirtatious, often trading frisky barbs with Shipwreck or stealing a kiss from Duke (much to Scarlett’s chagrin). She was very much a guys gal, always more a part of the Joes' boys club, than ever really one of the girls.

What always intrigued me most about the character was that she was this absolute knockout who leaves the cosmopolitan world of fashion modeling to join an elite military force and drive a motherfucking tank instead. That is pretty badass. And I really don't care that the 2009 film features a character that, I GUESS, is supposed to be Cover Girl. She was played by real life supermodel Karolina Kurkova, who is super hot and super Czech, but super bad at acting. Like most of the characters in the ‘09 film, "Cover Girl" (w/air quotes) is completely mishandled. However, she's barely in the film and I'm not even sure she's ever referred to by her codename. So I say let's just pretend it never happened (like the movie as a whole). Let's reboot the character properly for the sequel. To do that we need an actress who is hot, very important, but she also needs to be tough, equally important. I think the perfect fit for the new Cover Girl would be Swedish model and actress Mini Anden, best known for playing Carina Miller, spy friend and C.A.T. Squad teammate of Yvonne Strahovski's Sarah Walker on the show CHUCK. Fans of the show can attest to Mini's badassedness. And the look, well... it speaks for itself:

Ronald W. Tadur - Rank: Corporal (E-4) Codename: Dusty (by Jeff) 
When Cody and I discussed the possibility of revisiting the casting call for new Joes for the sequel the first name to come to my mind was Dusty, and it was partly after watching Channing Tatum's performance as Duke in the first film that inspired this thought. I kept thinking he really feels like he (Tatum) deserves to be on the Joe team, but just not as it's leader--I just couldn't see him leading these guys into battle. He certainly has the look of a soldier but he played him kind of naive and green which made me think, hmm, he really would have made a great Dusty. But of course, he can't be Dusty now that he's going to be Duke again, so we have to find someone else.
Now to give you some background on the character. Dusty was another favorite on the TV show he could be extremely naive in who he chooses to trust but the kid had heart and he was always the moral center of the Joes, he was always trying to do the right thing no matter what. Now in the comic book, Dusty gets some new specialties. Not only is he trained in Desert warfare he can speak Arabic and can be used as a tracker and survivalist in the extreme heat. Not to mention the guy can fix your air conditioner and your Fridge when it goes bust. No I'm not kidding you, he's an expert. It would be best to get someone who can pull off the inexperience without being annoying yet also be a skilled fighter and of course has to bring pathos and the moral perspective to the group. I do like Anton Yelchin for the role but he's played in so many pop culture films of this type, I think it may be time to give him a rest, also I'm not fully convinced even after he's played the young Reece from the last Terminator movies that he can someday be a badass, he's just too small. I think after careful consideration I'm going to go from the gut and go with Native Australian Liam Hemsworth for Dusty. He's a big kid, he looks posterboy Military but from the few roles I've seen of him, and they are few, he has an innocence about him that I think would work great for Dusty. Now he's mostly known, at least in this country, for doing Miley Cyrus and that movie of hers, but I think this could be his chance to get out of Miley's drunken shadow and his elder Brother Chris "Thor" Hemsworth by taking on a bad ass role equal to the mighty God of Thunder--Dusty.

1 comment:

xztiger said...

I'd really like to participate in the GI Joe 2 movie by contributing my acting skills I have some of my work on youtube. GI Joe Parking & Deadly Agent The Mission. Any word as to whom or where to send portfolio and resume? xztiger(at)yahoo