The Weinstein Company and Walt Disney Studios recently announced that they’re teaming up to adapt Eoin Colfer’s Artemis Fowl for the big screen. Written by Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix screenwriter Michael Goldenberg and executive produced by Robert De Niro and Jane Rosenthal, the film will combine the first two books in the eight-book series into one story. Readers young and old of the popular sci-fi/fantasy YA series have been waiting for the Fowl film adaptation since 2001 when Miramax purchased the films rights. After 12 years of watching it languish in development hell, we have more than a few ideas about who should play the live-action version of Colfer’s beloved characters.
While Asa Butterfield has proven his acting chops in Merlin and Hugo, and will surely give a commanding performance in Ender’s Game, at 16, he’s a bit too old to play the 12-year-old Artemis Fowl. That being said, such age restrictions haven’t stopped Hollywood in the past. Fourteen-year-old Isaac Hempstead-Wright, known for his portrayal of Bran Stark on Game of Thrones, could be a suitable choice for the criminal boy genius. And while we’re in GoT’s world, how about Art Parkinson, who plays Rickon, the often-ignored youngest Stark child. He’s currently 12, just like Fowl in the first novel. Plus, with the character’s future appearances on GoT uncertain, he may be free to take on such a meaty role and possible franchise.
Artemis’ caretaker and bodyguard Butler is no Alfred Pennyworth. He’s an imposing, highly skilled warrior with a soft spot for the kid criminal. What about Vinnie Jones (Snatch) or Ray Stevenson (Dexter), who have previously played tough guys with hearts of gold? Even Dolph Lundgren, in a strong push for a career comeback, might be a solid choice to play the vaguely Russian manservant. To infuse some heart and sarcastic humor à la Kat Dennings in Thor, Brie Larson or Abigail Breslin would be welcome picks for Butler’s American-born sister Juliet.
Captain Holly Short and the other magical creatures are more difficult to cast. It’s unclear whether the film will use computer-generated effects to bring the trolls, pixies, centaurs, and other fairy folk to life. Regardless, Being Human’s Kate Bracken or Misfits’ Antonia Thomas would capture the spark of the gung-ho Holly Short. Moreover, Lucy Liu or Sherlock’s Lara Pulver would readily bring the crazy to the sinister pixie and main antagonist, Opal Koboi.
Tech expert and centaur Foaly is one part James McAvoy in Chronicles of Narnia and one part Seth Green in Enemy of the State. An actor comfortable in both science fiction and fantasy settings, Dominic Monaghan of Lord of the Rings and Lost fame is an easy choice to play LEP’s head technological expert. The role of Mulch Diggums requires a talented character actor, which could include anyone from Toby Jones to Danny Trejo. But one of the only actors who could truly express the shadiness — and stench — of the kleptomaniac troll thief on screen is Jack Black.
Who else but executive producer Robert De Niro could play LEPrecon Commander Julius Root? Well, yes many actors could — Tom Wilkinson, James Caan, and Wendell Pierce (Root loves cigars just like Bunk!) to name a few — but I’ll be shocked if De Niro doesn’t firmly plant himself in the role of the hot-headed but kind-hearted “Beetroot.”
Who do you think should breathe life to the characters in the upcoming film adaptation of Artemis Fowl?
- Artemis Fowl
- Captain Holly Short
- Opal Koboi
- Mulch Diggums
- Julius Root