Robin Hood has a new Maid Marion as the curious case of “Nottingham’s” journey to the big screen continues.
Originally planned as a Robin Hood story from a different point view, the Sheriff of Nottingham’s, the Ridley Scott directed picture has now sadly evolved into a more traditional retelling of the legendary champion of the poor. At one time, Russell Crowe was to star as a “heroic” Sheriff while Hood was portrayed as more of a vigilante as they both fought over the attention of the lovely Maid Marion. Instead, the current incarnation will find Crowe playing Hood in what has become a more “Gladiator” version of the story.
Intriguingly, Sienna Miller was the first actress hired to play Marion to Crowe’s Hood, but everyone involved became increasingly concerned about whether an onscreen romance between the hardly svelte 44-year-old and the stunning 27-year-old would be believable. Miller smartly bowed out of the project and Variety is now reporting that Oscar-winner Cate Blanchett (a more reasonable 39 years young) will step into the role.
Additionally, the trade reports the movie will be retitled as it now been reconfigured as an original story that stays close to the historical facts of the period. The latest script will find Robin of Loxey starting out as an abandoned child who finds a home with the people of Nottingham. Yet, because of those same abandonment issues, he’s never been able to find love. However, he soon meets his match in Marian, a strong and independent woman. (Yes, very historical indeed.)
Still unclear is whether Crowe will also play the roles of Hood and the Sheriff. At one time, the plan was for the Aussie actor to play both parts.
Blanchett was last seen in “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” and will be a voice in Wes Anderson’s animated “Fantastic Mr. Fox.”
Crowe appeared in longtime collaborator Scott’s “Body of Lies” last fall. He’ll return to the screen this April in the drama “State of Play.”
Production on the $130 million adventure flick is expected to start this April in London.