Last we heard, New Line had greenlit Jack the Giant Killer from director Bryan Singer, who was in the early stages of casting. Singer has narrowed his casting list down, and is set to start screen testing a number of actors for both the male and female lead in the adventure film that finds the aptly-named Jack attempting to rescue a princess from giants. Heat Vision reports that Aaron Johnson (Kick-Ass), Nicholas Hoult (A Single Man), and Aneurin Barnard have been asked to come in and test for the title role. Johnson has long been thought to be the frontrunner for the role, and his Kick-Ass director Matthew Vaughn has recently been working closely with Singer on X-Men: First Class. Funnily enough, Hoult is currently filming his role as Beast in X-Men: First Class. Barnard is a relative newcomer, best known for his performance in the West End production of Spring Awakening.
Actresses considered for the role of the princess include Adelaide Kane (Power Rangers: RPM), Lily Collins (The Blind Side), and Juno Temple (Greenberg). Screen tests are set to take place in London in the next two weeks. For more on the project, hit the jump.
Even though I think Johnson is a fine actor, I like that Singer is screen testing for the role. It shows that he’s serious about finding the right person for the project, and not just going with who he has the closest ties to. If that person happens to be Johnson, I have no doubt he’ll knock the role out of the park. That guy definitely has a big career ahead of him.
Jack the Giant Killer has been in the works for quite a while now. Singer was originally going to direct the film before he helmed X-Men: First Class, but when it was clear that the CGI-heavy flick needed a lot more time and attention, he decided to simply produce the X-Men prequel instead of directing. Christopher McQuarrie (The Usual Suspects) has been fine-tuning the script while Singer has been busy pre-vising and working on the visual effects of the film. Apparently he wants the effects as finished as possible before he starts filming so he can see the actors interact with the CGI giants in the live-action portions of the film. Production on the New Line Cinema/Legendary Pictures film is set to begin in March.