Toss another potential project near the top of Ron Howard’s “to-do” pile.
As the director puts the finishing touches on his Formula-1 racing drama Rush, due in theaters on Sept. 20, Vulture is reporting that Howard might re-team with Rush lead Chris Hemsworth for an adaptation of Nathaniel Philbrick’s In the Heart of the Sea. Hemsworth currently is attached to play a sea captain aboard the Essex, whose doomed travels reportedly inspired Herman Melville to write the book Moby Dick. The role sounds ideal for Hemsworth, a swarthy action star, and his collaboration with Howard on Rush could inspire a string of projects, as the director often has been fond of re-teaming with leading men like Tom Hanks and Russell Crowe.
Here’s where things get dicey. Howard’s name recently has been attached to a slew of other projects, from a live-action telling of Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book to J.J. Abrams’ All I’ve Got, a potential remake of an Israeli television drama. Both of those projects are in the very early stages, however, with no writers tapped for either effort. So they could be pushed back, allowing Howard the opportunity to head out to see with Hemsworth at his helm.
Then there’s the reality of filming a movie like Sea. Period pictures are hard enough. Period pictures set on the ocean are damn-near impossible. Howard’s certainly a capable director, but he might want to reach out to his old pal Crowe and ask him how much fun it was to film Master and Commander. If Sea sets sail, Howard would be an excellent choice to guide Hemsworth. We’ll see how interested he is in tackling the project.
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