After months and months of casting rumors and shake-ups, it seems that Baz Luhrmann’s adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic tome The Great Gatsby has finally locked its roster up. The last piece in the talent puzzle was the role of Tom Buchanan, the wealthy Long Island aristocrat who feuds with Gatsby and cheats on his wife Daisy. Ben Affleck was most recently rumored to play him, but dropped out due to conflicts with his own film Argo. Now, Joel Edgerton, who finds himself in the running for nearly every high-profile film in development these days, has filled the void.
Deadline says that Luhrmann was thoroughly impressed with the Australian actor’s audition and provides a quote from the filmmaker on why he hired him: “In casting Tom one had to find an actor who could credibly be (as Fitzgerald describes him) ‘one of the most powerful ends that ever played football at New Haven,’ had five-star acting chops and in the big dramatic showdown scenes between Gatsby and Tom, hold the screen against Leonardo DiCaprio, in the appropriate age group. Any wonder, it has been a long and thorough journey. The simple truth is that Joel came into our rehearsal space in New York and fulfilled all of the above criteria, and then some.”
Sounds like Edgerton nailed the screen test, and if Luhrmann has that kind of confidence in the burgeoning star, I’m on board. As stated, Leonardo DiCaprio is playing the titular Gatsby, while his best friend Tobey Maguire will play narrator Nick Carraway. Carey Mulligan is Daisy, while Isla Fisher takes on the role of mistress Myrtle and Australian newcomer Elizabeth Debicki will play Jordan Baker, the golf pro who takes a liking to Nick. With a stellar cast and a grade A production team, this version of Gatsby is shaping up to be a glamorous throwback to Hollywood’s Golden Age, and I couldn’t be more ecstatic about it. Sure, the story has been adapted numerous times and was well done in most cases, but today’s materialistic society could use a wake up call from these iconic characters.