Universal Pictures Snow White and the Huntsmen is one of many children's stories coming back to the big screen, but one of the only to have its cast nearly locked into place. Over the past few months Charlize Theron was on again, off again, but appears to be almost set to play the villainous evil queen while the main roles - that of Snow White and the Huntsmen - haven't gotten as much attention. That changes today as Viggo Mortensen, who has been rumored for quite a few parts in big-budget films lately, seems to be close to landing the role of the Huntsman, according to Variety.
Rupert Sanders will direct the picture from a screenplay by Evan Daugherty, while Joe Roth (Alice In Wonderland) is producing. This iteration of the fable focuses on a huntsman, who, in the original tale is supposed to kill Snow White but ends up letting her go. He becomes the young girl's protector and mentor of sorts as they try to escape from the evil queen who ordered her death. Michael Fassbender had been rumored for the role previously, but he's been busy courting other high profile offers...
Meanwhile, Snow White's part is a more interesting situation. Sources indicate that Universal has been screen testing untried youths for the iconic role, much like Paramount Pictures did (with great success) for True Grit. However, Heat Vision claims that Kristen Stewart is not only a front runner, but is being aggressively courted by the studio. The Twilight star supposedly is such a commodity that she's not even required to screen test, so she may just need to make her decision and we could have our star.
I could personally see both of these actors in the respective roles. Both are major stars, especially with genre audiences. Their involvement, in addition to Theron's, adds a bit of prestige to an otherwise mainstream project that would be less intriguing with a cast of relative unknowns. Adding in established stars gives it a dynamic that will undoubtedly work in its favor. Stewart, though most known for vampire romances, is a fine actress who's been playing her cards right, taking on lots of indie fare to balance the box office might of The Twilight Saga, while Mortensen is a respected thespian and a bankable lead thanks to The Lord of the Rings and his acclaimed recent work with David Cronenberg.
Snow White and the Huntsmen has been fast tracked by the studio as its already got a December 21st 2012 release date and its competing with Relativity's rival Snow White picture, which has Tarsem Singh at the helm.