Edgerton, Evans up for key role in Luhrmann's "Gatsby"

Sun May 15, 2011 8:29pm EDT
 

By Borys Kit

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Baz Luhrmann is zeroing in on his Tom Buchanan for the all-star adaptation of "The Great Gatsby," being made in 3D by Warner Bros.

Insiders say Joel Edgerton and Luke Evans took part in readings for the role late in the week. No decision has been made, however, as to who ultimately gets it.

Buchanan is one of the key characters in F. Scott Fitzgerald's story of love and discontentment among the rich in lavish 1920s Long Island, New York. Leonardo DiCaprio is attached to play the wealthy and mysterious Jay Gatsby, while Tobey Maguire is playing Nick Carraway, the novel's narrator. Carey Mulligan is playing Gatsby's love, Daisy Buchanan, who is married to Tom Buchanan, a wealthy man having an affair with a mistress (Isla Fisher) in the city.

Ben Affleck circled the role, played by Bruce Dern in the Robert Redford-Mia Farrow 1970s version, earlier this year but ultimately couldn't make the dates work with "Argo," the political thriller that will be his next directorial effort. That movie is eyeing a September start while "Gatsby" is heading for a start in August.

Both Edgerton and Evans are among a group of increasingly sought-after male actors who often compete for similar roles. With "Gatsby," either of these actors could end up working with A-listers on an Oscar-level prestige period movie.

Edgerton, an Australian, is only now making serious headway into Hollywood productions, despite playing Owen Lars in the last "Star Wars" trilogy. He has two movies in post, Disney's "The Odd Life of Timothy Green" and Universal's prequel "The Thing," in the can.

Wales-born Evans appeared in "Clash of the Titans" and "Tamara Drewe," and is poised for real notice playing Aramis in Paul W.S. Anderson's adaptation of "The Three Musketeers" and playing Zeus opposite Henry Cavill in Tarsem Singh's "Immortals." He also stars opposite John Cusack in the Edgar Allan Poe thriller "The Raven."