We just recently learned that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows director David Yates had finally settled on Warner Bros.’ Tarzan adaptation as his post-Potter project, and now it appears that things are moving rather quickly on the film. At the time, we heard that Henry Cavill (Man of Steel), Charlie Hunnam (Sons of Anarchy), and Alexander Skarsgard (True Blood) were in the running for the titular lead role, with WB also interested in Tom Hardy should the actor spark to the idea. Now it appears that a frontrunner has emerged in the form of the 6’4″ Swede Skarsgard. Hit the jump for more.
Per Variety, Skarsgard has emerged as Yates’ top choice to play Tarzan in the pic. No offer has been made and the project still has to go before the studio’s greenlight committee, but Yates is one of WB’s top directors so if they sign off on the Skarsgard casting then pre-production will likely get underway early next year. The project’s script has been worked on by a number of scribes including John August, Cormac and Marianne Wibberley, and most recently Adam Cozad, and this iteration of the story picks up years after Tarzan has been assimilated into society.
The film finds the assimilated Tarzan “asked by Queen Victoria to investigate the goings-on in the Congo. Tarzan teams with an ex-mercenary named George Washington Williams to save the Congo from a fierce warlord who controls a massive diamond mine.” Variety adds that Samuel L. Jackson is being eyed to play the Williams character, a Civil War veteran who’s “eager to redeem himself for his part in the massacre of Native Americans.”
As for the other candidates that were previously mentioned for the lead, WB was apparently wary of having Cavill carry two major franchises (he is Superman, after all), and Hardy is wanting to take a break from blockbusters to take on smaller projects after he wraps Mad Max: Fury Road. Yates helmed the last four entries in the Potter franchise to great success, so all signs point to WB signing off on his leading man choice of Skarsgard. Should the film get the go-ahead, production is planning to get underway next summer.