Tom Hardy is one of the most intense actors in the game today; he’ll need that fire in his attempt to summit Mt. Everest in director Doug Liman’s (The Bourne Identity) new picture about the indomitable peak. Everest, adapted from Jeffrey Archer’s book, Paths Of Glory, Everest, by Sheldon Turner (Up in the Air), centers on George Mallory and his three attempts in the early 1920s to become the first man to climb the world’s highest mountain. Two guesses on who Hardy is in talks to play. Hit the jump for more.
Deadline reports that Hardy is in early talks to star as Mallory, a controversial figure in the sense that people still argue over whether he reached the peak on his last summit attempt in 1924. Regardless of whether he achieved the honor of being the first person to summit Everest, Mallory attempted to take on the mantle of a national hero for Great Britain, a country recently decimated by the effects of World War One. The military man was also highly competitive, wanting to reach the peak before Australian rival climber, George Finch. Rounding out Mallory’s character as a devoted family man, he was known to have a picture of his wife which he intended to leave at the peak; the photo was never found. With Hardy’s possible addition, Everest shows promising signs of becoming a strong, character-driven film based on historical events. Hopefully, its quality rivals similar films (such as Titanic) and gets Hardy over the top into Oscar contention.
Here’s the (somewhat) spoilery description from Archer’s book (via Amazon):
Some people have dreams that are so magnificent that if they were to achieve them, their place in history would be guaranteed. Francis Drake, Robert Scott, Charles Lindbergh, Amy Johnson, Edmund Hilary, Neil Armstrong, and Lewis and Clark are among such individuals.
But what if one man had such a dream, and once he’d fulfilled it, there was no proof that he had achieved his ambition?
Jeffrey Archer’s latest book, Paths of Glory, is the story of such a man—George Mallory. Mallory once told an American reporter that he wanted to climb Mt. Everest, “because it’s there.” On his third attempt in 1924, at age thirty-seven, he was last seen six hundred feet from the top. His body was found in 1999, and it still remains a mystery whether he ever reached the summit.
But only after you’ve turned the last page of this extraordinary novel, inspired by a true story, will you be able to decide if George Mallory’s name should be added to the list of legends, in which case another name would have to be removed. Paths of Glory is truly a triumph.