With the news that Warner Bros. and CBS are teaming up to bring Stephen King’s apocalyptic epic The Stand to the big screen (a move that is unsurprisingly not sanctioned by King himself), you had to know this was coming, right? Welcome to my Fantasy Casting of The Stand Adaptation!
My love for King’s The Dark Tower series has been officially recorded in the annals of the internet (like, a lot), but my love for The Stand is also deep and abiding. There was a long period of my youth in which I read that novel every single summer break. It was a significant tradition for me to crack open my fat, worn paperback on the first day of freedom and delve into King’s “dark chest of wonders” with gusto. The Stand is prodigious, engaging and profound. It’s also horrifying and hilarious. I don’t believe that any one adaptation can grasp the depth and scope of this vast story, but I believe Hollywood can do a better job than the 1994 mini-series. Don’t get me wrong–I love the mini-series. I own it! And Gary Sinise and Rob Lowe are both perfectly cast as Stu and Nick, respectively. But the series is silly and cheap when it should be terrifying, and many of the other actors are miscast. I hardly think one two-hour feature film can deliver this monumental narrative, but hopefully The Powers That Be will turn it into a trilogy or at least a two-parter. That shit could melt our collective faces, y’all.
So let’s jump in! (I tried to keep this from being too spoilery for those who haven’t read the book. Also: READ THE BOOK.)
Stuart Redman (Stu):
Originally played to perfection by Gary Sinise, Stu’s an intelligent, taciturn East Texan man who is forced into an experimental lab after the government realizes he’s immune to the superflu. Stu makes his escape and, while mild and laidback, eventually emerges as the leader of the survivors as they try to rebuild an approximation of society. Stu is wise and brave, the closest thing to a main character in this sprawling ensemble of characters.
As Castiel on Supernatural, Collins has established that he has poise, charisma and major chops. He can play mild or intense, which is key for Stu, and Collins has a pleasant, everyman way about him. I think he could definitely stand out in the crowd of cast members this adaptation will necessitate. Continue reading