With a fuddy-duddy yet bizarrely sexy style, English actor Matt Smith won hearts worldwide as the Eleventh Doctor on the long-running and much loved science fiction series Doctor Who. But with his run as the Doctor wrapped, Smith is turning to a new bit of revisionist storytelling with Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.
The Hollywood Reporter says that Matt Smith has joined the cast of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. Based on the Seth Grahame-Smith parody novel of the same name, the film takes the core of Jane Austen's classic Pride and Prejudice and weaves in hoards of zombies and some sweet martial arts fight sequences.
Lily James is set to star as the smart and ass-kicking Elizabeth Bennet; and Sam Riley (who recently stole scenes as Diaval in Maleficent) will be her Mr. Darcy. Douglas Booth is poised to play Mr. Bingley, while Bella Heathcote is on board to play a Bennet sister (we suspect oldest sister Jane, fated to fall for Bingley). Jack Huston will portray the rascally Mr. Wickham, Emma Greenwell the caustic Caroline Bingley. And for Matt Smith that leaves the role of Mr. Collins.
For those who could use a refresher, Mr. Collins is a cousin to the Bennets who comes to their home in search of a wife. He's socially awkward, classist, dull and often rude. He's a jerk that you wouldn't want any of the Bennet girls to end up with. You may even actively wish something terrible might befall him. (Good chance of that if you plan to see Pride and Prejudice and Zombies!) It's usually a role that's ripe for awkward comedy, and on one hand I truly believe Smith will be great at that. He's always had a whimsical sense of humor and old-ahead-of- his-time goofiness as The Doctor. But having him in this classic love story (sort of) and not playing Mr. Darcy? It's madness!
I'm sure Sam Riley is very charming in his own right. But casting an actor who already has a fan following that is actively engaged in shipping him into all kinds of romantic scenarios, doesn't it seem like making Matt Smith this movie's Mr. Darcy would be a no-brainer?
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies has had a rocky road to production, but its soon to shoot incarnation boasts a script penned by David O. Russell and Burr Steers. Steers, best known for helming the double dose of Zac Efron that was 17 Again and Charlie St. Cloud, will also helm this horror comedy. Production is set to kick off next month.