Actor Benjamin Walker (who appeared in Flags of Our Fathers, All Saints Day and Coach) has been hired by Fox to play the lead role as Abe in the upcoming Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter movie.
A few months ago we posted an article about The Fox adaptations of Seth Grahame-Smith fantasy graphic novel “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.” It was reported Timur Bekmambetov (Wanted, Night Watch) would direct, Tim Burton would produce, and Seth Grahame-Smith was hired to adapt his book into a screenplay. It was also said that the movie should be shot in 3D with a $69 million budget.
Meanwhile, Fox was looking for actors who could play 16th President if 16th President hunted vampires in his extra time. Fox was screen testing the following actors for the role of young Abe Lincoln in Timur Bekmambetov’s “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter” : Adrien Brody, Timothy Olyphant, Josh Lucas, James D’Arcy (Into the Storm), Oliver Jackson-Cohen (Faster), and Benjamin Walker (Flags of Our Fathers). Some favored Adrien Brody.
But British actor Benjamin Walker is a lucky guy. He at least has the same first name as another famous US President as well. All kidding aside, the Fox adaptation is a big coup for Walker, who has been performing on Broadway of late. His screen credits include the movies “Flags of our Fathers” and Golden Compass as well as the TV show Torchwood. Casting calls for the actor to play the Lincoln from the age of 20 to 55, from boyish and gangly to skilled boxer to middle-aged with trademarked beard. (Still open audition for uncast role of Henry Sturges, who mentors and trains Abe in the ways of vampire hunting. Fox targeted Tom Hardy before he took the role of Bane in The Dark Knight Rises.)
Timur Bekmambetov who will direct and co-produce with Tim Burton and Jim Lemley, said
We are keeping the traditional look of Lincoln – the big hat and the beard. He has to be historically correct, but with a few special weapons. There is only one book, but there will be many opportunities to develop and explore this world if we get to do sequels… I hope we will start this winter. We are shooting in America.
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is being slated for June 22, 2012.
Watch a clip of Walker from a preview of Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, which re-imagines America’s seventh president as an Emo rock star.