Film: The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus


Some of you may have heard of “The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus,” Terry Gilliam’s most recent project, that was to star Heath Ledger. At the time of his death, Ledger had already completed a considerable amount of shooting, and nobody was really sure what was going to come of the movie.

There were reports that Gilliam had decided to drop the project all together, and just move on, but a few weeks ago reports came in that Gilliam was going to continue, with a different actor in Ledger’s role, but at the same time preserving Ledger’s performance for the film.

Apparently, the script somehow allows for the main character to appear differently at different points in the movie. I don’t know how it works, since little is known about the plot at this point, and my inner pirate has failed to procure a copy of the script.

However, Ain’t It Cool News reported today that we will see three actors step in and portray Heath Ledger’s character, and the list of actors reads like a Hollywood Heavyweight roll call.

In the red corner, hailing from Foggy Londontown, boasting such credits as “Closer,” “Cold Mountain” and “Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow,” is JUDE LAW.

In the green corner, from Dublin, Ireland, is the star of “In Bruges,” “The New World,” and “Alexander” (but don’t hold it against him)…COLIN FARRELL.

And in the blue corner, Owensboro, Kentucky’s favorite son, the star of “21 Jump Street,” “A Nightmare on Elm Street,” and “Ed Wood,” (and oh yeah, “Pirates of the Caribbean,” “Edward Scissorhands,” “Sweeney Todd,” “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas,” etc., etc.)…JOHNNY FREAKING DEPP!

As far as recasting a part goes, Gilliam hit a grand slam with this. I am of the opinion that Johnny Depp is physically incapable of doing anything less than stellar live action work (making that stipulation so I don’t have to answer for the mess that was “Corpse Bride”), and Jude Law is great in most everything he does. I’ll be interested to see how they use Colin Farrell, because he’s certainly a talented actor, but he’s less proven than the other two, and his acting style is quite different from the others, as well.

I’ll be keeping a close eye on this project. Terry Gilliam is a favorite director of mine, and when he brings his A game, there’s nobody else that can do the things he does the way he does them. With this film now boasting the talents of four monster stars, and having the PR momentum behind it of being Heath Ledger’s final film, “Dr. Parnassus” will be worth keeping an eye on.

See you space cowboy,

–Brad Canze, the CM Life movie dude


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