In what can only be called the most inspired casting of all time, the Playlist reports that Blake Lively has been offered the lead role in director Craig Gillespie’s (Lars and the Real Girl*) big screen adaptation of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. The director and producers must have seen Lively’s wooden performance in this summer’s Green Lantern and decided that, after Keira Knightley, Natalie Portman, Mia Wasikowska, Emma Stone, Anne Hathaway, and Scarlett Johansson all seemingly turned it down, she was ultimately the best choice to play the main zombie in the film. What’s that? The “lead role” in question is Elizabeth Bennet, heroine of both the Austen classic and the undead rewrite and not a zombie?
Well, shit. There goes any hope for the cast of the Joe Wright version just re-adapting their take to include zombies (which, besides Keira Knightley, included Rosamund Pike, Jena Malone, Carey Mulligan, Brenda Blethyn, and Donald Sutherland, and whatever you think about that movie, I know you’re lying if you say you wouldn’t be delighted to see Donald Sutherland teaching young women how to slay the living dead). Of course, Blake Lively can hit her marks and say her lines, but let’s hope the script is good enough to carry her where Green Lantern couldn’t — but where a movie like The Town can.
Considering directors David O. Russel and Mike White were also once attached to adapt the book and have since moved on that seems like a tall order, just out reach as a snarling zombie tries to rip your throat out; not to mention the number and caliber of actresses who were said to have received offers but are now attached to other, arguably better, projects instead. Lively seems to be, at best, not the first choice, which means Pride and Prejudice and Zombies probably isn’t going to be the successor to Zombieland many were hoping for. In fact, this may be the exact moment that zombies finally jumped the shark.**
C’est la vie, there’s always Youtube:
* Insert your joke about the ironic distance between the Real Girl’s “real girl” and a zombie here.
** And even if it should technically be “nuked the fridge,” somebody should make a “zombie jumping the shark” T-shirt. (It will be the best one.)