We've got a bit of a soft-spot for Aaron Taylor-Johnson, by far the best part of Oliver Stone's Savages. Although he often takes on older parts, Aaron is but a spry 22 years old. His ambiguous age makes him the perfect actor to play Louis Zamperini from the Berlin Olympics through his POW days.
Photo by Matthew Vaughn, Interview, May 2010.
Zamperini was married to Cynthia Applewhite for 55 years, until she died in 2001. We think Alicia Vikander would make a nice Applewhite.
Photo by Sebastian Kim, Interview, September 2011.
Another American POW held in the same camp as Zamperini was Gregory "Pappy" Boyington, who wrote a book about his experiences entitled Baa Baa Black Sheep. We'd like a Looper-esque Joseph Gordon-Levitt to play Boyington.
Photo by William Claxton, Interview, April 2007.
We'd like Martin Landau to play an older Louis Zamperini.
Mutsuhiro Watanabe was a guard at Zamperini's POW camp. Watanabe allegedly tortured Zamperini and was named on General Douglas MacArthur (not to be confused with Communist-hunter McCarthy)'s list of wanted war criminals in Japan. Watanabe ultimately avoided prosecution; and when Zamperini returned to Japan in 1998 as part of the Olympic procession, he asked to meet Watanabe once again. Watanabe refused. The fact that they have the same last name is pure coincidence, but we nominate Ken Watanabe (Inception, The Last Samurai) to play Mutsuhiro Watanabe.
Upon his return to the US, Zamperini found god with the help of celebrity preacher, Billy Graham. In our film, Billy Graham will be played by John C. Reilly.