Liam Hemsworth, Kit Harington, Dane DeHaan and More Up for Sci-Fi Adaptation THE HOST

     October 31, 2011


The adaptation of Twilight author Stephanie Meyer’s sci-fi novel The Host is gearing up now that writer-director Andrew Niccol has wrapped up duties on his latest feature In Time. The film takes place in the future, and Saoirse Ronan is set to star as Melanie, a woman whose body is invaded by an alien named Wanderer. Casting has now turned to the two male leads in the film: Jared, Melanie’s boyfriend, and Ian, “a menacing young man who brutalizes Wanderer before falling in love with her.” Hit the jump to find out what actors are in the running for the two roles.

the-host-book-coverVariety reports that the actors testing for Jared include Liam Hemsworth (The Hunger Games), Kit Harington (Game of Thrones), Jai Courtney (Spartacus: Blood and Sand), and Max Irons (Red Riding Hood). Testing for Ian is Dane DeHaan (In Treatment), Thomas McDonnell (Prom), Augustus Prew (The Borgias), and Jake Abel (The Lovely Bones).

Hemsworth is already in deep as one of two male leads with another franchise, The Hunger Games, but he’s definitely one of the more in-demand young actors at the moment. Harington has also been in the spotlight as of late, as he’s in the running for the role of Arthur in David Dobkin’s Arthur & Lancelot. Ian seems to be a much darker role, and DeHaan can certainly pull off menacing judging by the recent trailer for the found-footage superhero movie Chronicle.

I haven’t read The Host, so I’m not going to try to judge what actors are best for the roles. I will say I liked Harington’s work on Game of Thrones quite a bit, and DeHaan sure seems like he can handle nefarious. As for Niccol, In Time was a bit of a disappointment but this is still the guy behind Gattaca and The Truman Show. I’m curious to find out what Niccol saw in Meyer’s source material to draw him to the project. The Host opens March 29th, 2013.

Here’s the synopsis for The Host:

Melanie Stryder refuses to fade away. The earth has been invaded by a species that take over the minds of human hosts while leaving their bodies intact. Wanderer, the invading “soul” who has been given Melanie’s body, didn’t expect to find its former tenant refusing to relinquish possession of her mind.

As Melanie fills Wanderer’s thoughts with visions of Jared, a human who still lives in hiding, Wanderer begins to yearn for a man she’s never met. Reluctant allies, Wanderer and Melanie set off to search for the man they both love.

Featuring one of the most unusual love triangles in literature, THE HOST is a riveting and unforgettable novel about the persistence of love and the essence of what it means to be human. [Amazon]

  • Gaby

    That description of Ian is way off. He’s not really a sinister character. I actually think Kit would play him best. Too bad he’s up for Jared.

  • S@n

    I read the book and none of these actors, to correspond to the characters I imagined, nor even Saoirse as Melanie.

    • Jill

      “The Big Question” is: do any of the proposed actors have the acting chops to not fall apart when sharing the screen with Ronan? Based on their filmography and just reading quick performance reviews (NOT basing it on their looks):

      My picks for Jared -
      Kit Harington
      Max Irons

      My picks for Ian -
      Dane Dehaan
      Augustus Prew
      Jake Abel (maybe)

  • Paul

    I’m a fan of Niccol’s but was a bit disappointed in In Time. I hope this is the right choice for him because it doesn’t seem to have the resonance with Meyer’s fans like the Twilight books. I just don’t see people lining up for this, but for his sake I’d love to be wrong. For the most part, I like his work and another box office tank might do some damage to his career.

  • SaadGKhan

    Kit Harington all the wya, this guy deserves a chance to be in Limelight.. he will be superb.

  • AnaB

    This list is all kinds of wrong… just… ugh!

  • zootcatchy

    i have dissonant feeling about this project and think it’s not gonna be good eventually, I wouldn’t want Harington to be involved in this.

    • Jill

      Why’s that?

      It has Andrew Niccol and Saoirse Ronan attached to it. Those two give this otherwise ridiculous premise a fighting chance. Add in a capable editor and cinematographer, the movie may be good.

      • zootcatchy

        Saoirse is a great actress but she’s no saver for the movie, too young and unexpirienced, she’s just a tool at this point.
        I’m afraid that everything written by Meyer will always have that soap opera flavour… well
        LET’S SEE female lead – Bella, two male leads – GUESS WHO!
        TWILIGHT ALL OVER AGAIN! with a bit different decorations.
        Niccol only able to make a solid movie written only by himself.

    • Jill

      “Saoirse is a great actress but she’s no saver for the movie, too young and unexpirienced, she’s just a tool at this point.
      I’m afraid that everything written by Meyer will always have that soap opera flavour… well
      LET’S SEE female lead – Bella, two male leads – GUESS WHO!
      TWILIGHT ALL OVER AGAIN! with a bit different decorations.
      Niccol only able to make a solid movie written only by himself.”

      For some reason I can’t reply to your the actual quoted statement. Anyways. It seems you refuse to acknowledge the fact that Andrew Niccol wrote the screenplay, and even then you refuse to let go of the “it’s a Meyer novel” attitude. Although The Host and Twlight do share a female protagonist and two male leads your dislike for Meyer clouds your judgment that TALENT is involved with this movie that the Twilight saga did not have: an actual talented lead actress (why would an older actress make it better if they are of lesser talent? Answer that question.) and director/script writer which Andrew Niccol is in charge.

      The last statement of yours is self fulfilling. Andrew may not have thought of the premise himself (neither did Meyer since her book is a hybrid of other sci-fi stories) but the book he has worked with is only giving him a recycled premise in which he can paint whatever elements he wants. Add to the fact that most of the producers involved with The Host Movie seem to take this project with seriousness and a search for quality talent that Twilight did not have.

  • jessie

    Just awful choices… none of them really correspond to how the characters are suppose to look… and they aren’t really all that fantastic talent wise either… the only one I would be somewhat okayish with is Jake Abel as Ian… I’m actually okay with Saoirse Ronan as Melanie/Wanderer, because she can actaully portray the duel parts well… even though she doesn’t look right for the part…

  • sugarbee

    I actually had high hopes that this might be reasonably well adapted when Saoirse Ronan was cast, because at least she can act. But, it’s going to be god awful; just like the Twilight films.

  • Sanette

    It’s nice to see Harington in the spotlight but I really don’t want to see him in this. Something written by Meyer just can’t be good even if it is directed by Niccol.

    • zootcatchy


      • Jill

        “supporting role in a good movie better than lead role in a crap”

        That statement is ridiculous because the movie hasn’t even started filming let alone any reviews aren’t going to be written until its release date of 2013.

    • Jill

      Screenplay was written by Andrew Niccol. If Kit is the top choice, and I hope he is, then that’s one male protagonist in the bag. He at least has some decent acting chops.

      • zootcatchy

        supporting role in a good movie better than lead role in a crap

  • Liz

    I think the bigger problem is they seem to be casting extremely young. Both Jared and Ian are supposed to be closer to 30. It’s the end of the world, and age doesn’t really matter anymore, but Stephanie makes it pretty clear that Melanie is a lot younger that Jared when they meet, enough that he feels uncomfortable getting intimate with her because she’s so young. The same goes for Ian. I think they need to be looking for those 28-32 year old actors that might look young, but still have a wisdom to them, like they’ve really seen the world. I’m also really interested to see how they try to cast Jamie. He’s so intricate to the relationship dynamics in the story, because EVERYONE in the story loves this kid.
    In regards to other comments, I LOVED The Host. It was by far a better story than Twilight. Yes, it’s a little on the long side, and Stephanie gets carried away a lot with explanations and descriptions, but the characters, the story, the concept, the philosophies are so much more powerful. I think Twilight has been going so long that it’s covered up The Host, but that doesn’t mean that the audience won’t carry over. It spent 26 weeks on the NYTimes Best Seller List. If they can get enough footage shot for a teaser trailer before Breaking Dawn Part 2 comes out, they can catch any of the Twilight fans before they loose interest.

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