Casting Call: The Seagull

Published May 18, 2012

Among the good things that came out of Sundance 2012 is Slated, a company devoted to investing in quality indie films! Here, here. Slated’s first two projects are already in the works: a look into the continuing demand for director Roman Polanski, in spite of the charges he faces for statutory rape he faces, should he ever return to the US, and a modern adaptation of Chekhov’s The Seagull, directed by actor Christian Camargo.

A brief synopsis of the play, for those who are unfamiliar: Irina Arkadina, a celebrated melodramatic actress, her son, aspiring playwright Konstantin Trepylov, and her lover, writer Boris Trigorin, are all staying at the estate of Irina’s brother, Sorin. There’s some family tension—Konstantin just wants his mother’s respect, but seems unable to win her over; Sorin’s health is rapidly deteorating, etc.—and a bit of a love hexagon. Konstantin is in love with his uncle’s neighbor, Nina, who falls in love with Trigorin, who is the lover of Konstantin’s mother. A girl called Masha, whose father works on Sorin’s estate, is in love with Konstantin, who herself is loved by an impoverished school teacher named Medvedenko. Those 19th century Russians weren’t known for their light-hearted comedies, so we’re sure you can work out where all this is going: vodka-laden tragedy.

According to our dear friends at Indiewire, Camargo already is assembling his Seagull cast, which currently includes Allison Janney, William Hurt, and Katie Holmes. We’re not sure who will portray whom, but our best guess is that that Janney will play aging actress Irina Arkadina, Hurt her lover, the writer Trigorin, and Holmes… we’re not sure; she’s a little too old to play the 19-year-old Nina, too young to play Irina… perhaps Masha?

While there are no objective “wrong” choices, as experienced fantasy-casting professionals, we thought we’d offer Camargo some alternatives to our least favorite Dawson’s Creek alumna.