Does Terry Gilliam have a fantastic plan to get his film back on track or is this just a massive internet rumor that is circulating around the blogger geeks?
Call me an insensitive jerk if you will, but when Heath Ledger died, the first thing I thought was "Damn! Gilliam is cursed!"
See, Ledger was in the middle of filming Gilliam's "The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus" and Heath was a big part of the reason why that film was even greenlit. I wasn't alone in this thinking and the blogosphere was all a-flutter about the fate of Gilliams latest flick.
But if the rumors are to be believed, it looks like Gilliam might actually have a trick up his sleeve of mammoth proportions.
Moriarty over at Aint It Cool News has reported that none other than Johnny Depp, Jude Law and Colin Farrell will step in and take over the role that was originally started by Ledger.
I know it seems like a fantasticly insane idea and as far-fetched as it could possibly get, but as Jason from Inner 88 points out, it makes sense when you look at the script:
...the Faustian story of The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus centers on the boisterous Dr. Parnassus (played by Christopher Plummer), a 1,000-years-old performer who offers audience members a chance to enter fantastical worlds of imagination (via a magical mirror) in a race with the devil for the life of his daughter. If audience members make a righteous choice, their soul is awarded to Parnassus. If they make a heinous one, their soul belongs to the devil.AICN's Moriarty says this is a done deal, but I still have my doubts that Gillam could even afford one of Johnny Depp's shoes, let alone Depp, Law and Farrell. Are they doing the film for free? Sadly no other information exists to explain this, and no other website has anything other than linking to the same news that Moriarty broke. And Moriarty never explained how he knows this information in the first place. I know the guy is connected and all, but come on! This has to be the biggest news of the year.
Ledger was playing a mysterious outsider who embarks on his own quest through parallel worlds to save the girl. Reportedly, Ledger’s character falls through the “magical mirror” in the film. The filmmakers will thus use the “magical mirror” device as an opportunity to change the look of the character and interchange between the four actors.
This isn't the first time Gilliam has encountered obstacles to his craft. If you have ever watched the documentary "Lost In La Mancha" you know the kind of headaches Terry has had in the past. When Heath died during filming of Parnassus, I figured this would just be another film that Terry would have to shelve and move on with.
But if the rumors are true, however, casting three huge A-list stars for the parts could turn Gilliam's small-time, shoestring budget film into a blockbuster and finally give the filmmaker some much-needed credit in Tinseltown.
UPDATE: The rumors are confirmed and Variety has reported that all three actors are signed on to continue the role.