Armie Hammer will be turning on the charm as the handsome prince in one of the dueling Snow White movies currently in production, according to Relativity Films. Hammer, currently shooting Clint Eastwood’s J. Edgar Hoover biopic with Leonardo DiCaprio, has joined the film starring Julia Roberts as the classic folktale’s Evil Queen. Best known for playing the Winklevoss twins in The Social Network, Hammer won’t play Prince Charming, but rather a character named Prince Albert Alcott.
At one point, Saoirse Ronan (The Lovely Bones, the upcoming Hanna) was in consideration for the lead role of Snow White, according to a source close to the production, but with the casting of 24-year-old Hammer, it is unlikely the 16-year-old Ronan will fit with the film.
Director Tarsem Singh (The Cell, Immortals) said casting Roberts as the queen was the pivotal role around which all the others revolved. “I just said, ‘What I want is the Queen, because that dictates how old Snow White is,’” he said in an earlier interview. “There’s a lot of banter between the prince and the queen and the person who is Snow White. So I knew the tough situation there was, if I went with Snow White, and went really young with her, and I got a queen who was much older, it would be really hard to play a comedy love-triangle with the prince because he could come off as pedophilic on one side and oedipal on the other. Now that we have the queen, I’m going 21-ish for Snow White and late 20s for the Prince, so the [love triangle] joke can still be played.”
The movie starts shooting in May with plans for a June 29, 2012 debut. Another film, Snow White and the Huntsman, is in pre-production at Universal and has Kristen Stewart in the lead with Charlize Theron as the queen. Viggo Mortensen was in talks for the role of the huntsman, who abandons his mission to kill Snow White and instead becomes her protector, but The Lord of the Rings star has reportedly bowed out. That film is set to debut in late December 2012.
Read all about the Snow White wars in the current print edition of Entertainment Weekly.