Here’s what we know about the Guys And Dolls remake: 20th Century Fox has purchased the rights to the musical based on the stage play (based on Damon Runyon’s short stories) and there is no writer or director attached yet. Here’s what we’ve heard about the Guys And Dolls remake: the producers want Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Channing Tatum to star as Sky Masterson and Nathan Detroit, respectively. This casting skews a bit younger than what we’re used to seeing for the show, but would, no doubt, kick the musical-loving audience into a Magic Mike-esque frenzy. But is it the best casting we can conceive of? And what of the ladies? Will we have to endure another round of Taylor Swift/Lea Michelle casting rumors? They might go Disney starlet. They might cast Anne Hathaway. And so the best that I can do is pray.
The second male lead, I always thought of Nathan as a bit more of a comedic role. Charming Potato has proved he can do laid-back comedy very well, but he just seems a little wrong for the part. Here’s how I would rank the options.
4. Hugh Dancy: Okay Dancy’s not a serious contender, but I did want to remind you that your new TV crush, “Hannibal“‘s Will Graham, did this. Yes he did.
3. Damien Lewis: The “Homeland” actor has got some pipes on him.
2. Channing Tatum: I don’t hate the idea of C-Tates in the role. Lord knows he has the moves. I wasn’t sure if I had heard him sing before, but his Meat Loaf impression here is pretty decent. It’s possible that they won’t give Nathan too many songs. (In the 1955 film version they gave Sinatra the titular song and added “Adelaide,” but in the stage show Nathan only has two solos.) Detroit also isn’t a very dance-y role, so I’m worried Tatum’s sweet sweet moves will be wasted.
1. James Marsden: Marsden is the perfect blend of singing talent and slightly shady character. I’d love it.
Masterson is the ostensible lead. He gets to perform the showstopper “Luck Be A Lady” and anyone who takes on this role gets to say they followed in Marlon Brando’s (slightly off-key) footsteps. It’s a shame both Ewan McGregor and Peter Gallagher are too old for the role because they did the lovesick gambler credit. Oh, Sandy Cohen.
1. Joseph Gordon-Levitt: I mean. There’s no competition here. I’d actually prefer JGL in the Detroit role but if he wants the lead, he should have it. Lord knows he’s put in the song and dance time. His “Luck Be A Lady” will be divine and his “I’ll Know” swoon-worthy. I wish I could give you that video of him doing Donald O’Conner on “Saturday Night Live,” but this’ll have to do.
Nathan’s doll and lead singer at The Hot Box, whoever plays Adelaide has to bring both the screwball comedy and the sex appeal.
4. Scarlett Johansson: Listen, I actually think she’s got much more comedic talent than she’s given credit for. She’s got the sex appeal part nailed and a connection to JGL through their work together on Don Jon. I think this would actually be surprisingly great.
3. Zooey Deschanel: Not sure she has quite the necessary sizzle, but I’d rather see her stretch into this role than to land another ingenue part. Once again there’s a strong connection to JGL and I sort of miss seeing Zooey as a blonde.
2. Emmy Rossum: Though she bungled the National Anthem very recently, Rossum has actual training as a singer. Anyone who’s seen her delightful performance on “Shameless” knows she can do working class sexy very well.
1. Megan Hilty: This, however, would by my number one with a bullet. Hilty has been languishing over on “Smash” but she is the real deal. She’s got the talent and just the right look.
A buttoned up, straight laced missionary ingenue-type who gets completely undone by both Sky Masterson and a whole lotta Cuban rum. (Not my favorite boy meets girl plot line, let me tell you that right now.)
4. Felicia Day: Day is not the strongest actress in the bunch but she does show, in this clip, that she has just the right kind of high soprano for Sarah’s songs.
3. Alison Brie: This would be a big break for our favorite Greendale resident. She’s been playing uptight over on NBC for awhile now and has built a sweet little singing career on the side.
2. Kristen Bell: Remember Burlesque, musical fans? Remember how they totally wasted Kristen Bell? She is a killer talent and would make a great unlaced missionary as evidenced by this, my favorite Bell performance.
1. Anna Kendrick : Kendrick ran away with our hearts last year with her absolutely adorable turn in Pitch Perfect. Added bonus? She’s got the right neurotic vibe for Sarah. She and JGL would be perfection together.
Also did you know she’s been doing this for quite awhile? Because she has.
Though he’s a side character, Nicely Nicely has what is unquestionable the best number in the show. Who could bring it home with “Sit Down You’re Rockin’ The Boat”?
2. Josh Gad: Gad is actually a little on the slender side for Nicely Nicely, but he does have a good set of pipes. I have not been enamored with his antics on “1600 Penn” but he is a damn sight better than Dan Fogler.
1. Jacob Wysocki: Wysocki would actually be my number one choice if he could sing a note. He’s pretty young (only 22), but I think he could pull it off. Alas….
The imposing but comedic “villain” of the show, Big Julie doesn’t have to sing much at all.
3. John Goodman: Because what couldn’t be improved by a little John Goodman?
2. John C. Reilly: Yeah yeah yeah, his best musical moment is probably Mr. Cellophane from Chicago, but I have a soft spot for A Prairie Home Companion.
1. Nathan Fillion: Fillion proved in Joss Whedon’s Much Ado About Nothing that he makes for EXCELLENT comic relief. He might have leading man looks, but he plays them for laughs.
The extra girls in the show don’t have much to do outside of shaking it at The Hot Box. That being said, these cuties would shake it quite well.
The extra guys, on the other hand, have great potential. “Benny” and “Rusty” get to sing “Fugue For Tinhorns,” “The Oldest Established” and “Guys And Dolls.” I’d happily see any of these chaps sip into a fedora and pinstripe.
Skylar Astin and Aaron Tveit