Yesterday, the final important piece in Baz Luhrmann’s cast for The Great Gatsby fell into place, as Joel Edgerton signed on to play Tom Buchanan, the white supremacist millionaire. There have been a lot of casting notes, rumors, and shifts, so I thought it would be helpful to post the finalized cast here and let you chew over the principals. What do you think? I think they absolutely nailed it, and Edgerton (Animal Kingdom) is the perfect Buchanan. The only somewhat weak member here is Toby Maguire, if only because I would’ve preferred a stronger-jawed presence, like Ben Affleck. Otherwise, Lurhmann has put together a brilliant cast, and as long as he can rein in his excess, it looks to be a great movie and, obviously, a strong Oscar contender.
Director: Baz Luhrmann
Screenwriter: Baz Luhrmann (based on the F. Scott Fitzgerald novel)
Jay Gatsby: Leonardo DiCaprio. Gatsby is a young, mysterious millionaire later revealed to be a bootlegger, originally from North Dakota, with shady business connections and an obsessive love for Daisy Buchanan, whom he had met when he was a young officer in World War I.
Daisy Buchanan: Carey Mulligan. Daisy is an attractive and effervescent, if shallow young woman; Nick’s second cousin, once removed; and the wife of Tom Buchanan.
Nick Carraway: Toby Maguire. Carraway, the narrator, is a bond salesman from the Midwest, a New Haven graduate, a World War I veteran, and a resident of West Egg. He is Gatsby’s next-door neighbor.
Tom Buchanan: Joel Edgerton. Tom is a millionaire who lives on East Egg, and Daisy’s husband. Buchanan has parallels with William Mitchell, the Chicagoan who married Ginevra King. Buchanan and Mitchell were both Chicagoans with an interest in polo. Like Ginevra’s father, whom Fitzgerald resented, Buchanan attended New Haven and is a white supremacist.
Myrtle Wilson: Isla Fisher. Tom Buchanan’s mistress.
Jordan Baker: Elizabeth Debicki. Jordan Daisy Buchanan’s long-time friend, a professional golfer with a slightly shady reputation.