Gerard Butler's Last Stand

Category: 300 News | Posted by: admin
Article Date: August 16, 2005 | Publication: EmpireOnline | Author: Editors
Publication/Article Link:

A few months back, we reported here that Zack Snyder was all set to adapt Frank Miller's graphic novel 300. Today sees the first casting news on the film, as Gerard "Phantom of the Opera" Butler joins the cast as Leonidas, hero of the film and all-around warrior dude.

As all the Classics scholars and comic book fans among you will know, Miller's 300 tells the famous story of the 300 Spartan warriors in ancient Greece, who held the narrow pass of Thermopylae against a Persian army that certainly numbered in the hundreds of thousands and may, depending on whether or not you believe Herodotus, have been as many as 3.4 million. Sure, the battle didn't have the happiest of endings, but valour is its own reward and all that.

Butler will play Leonidas, King of the Spartans (not to be confused with any purveyors of high-quality chocolate). He's probably best known for his role as the titular boogeyman in Phantom of the Opera last Christmas, but also appeared in Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle Of Life and in Reign Of Fire - all of which, one way or another, should help him with overcoming impossible odds. After all, if a man can fight dragons, Angelina Jolie and still come out singing, he's gotta be pretty brave.

The film is going to start shooting in October in Montreal, somehow doubling for ancient Greece, so expect more casting news in the next month of so. The script was written by Snyder and Kurt Johnstad from the Miller graphic novel, and we're assured that the look of the film will rely on "hyper-real" renderings, similar to the stylized illustrations of Miller's novel.

So while tales of ancient Greece may not have done so very well of late (cough cough Alexander cough), we're hopeful that this story will buck the trend, and that Butler will live up to the legend he's playing. Watch this space for more news.