“You can’t see California without Marlon Brando‘s eyes.”
– Slipknot, Eyeless
Zoolander’s friend and TOMBSTONE actor Billy Zane has been cast to play Marlon Brando for the upcoming project WALTZING WITH BRANDO, a film based on a memoir about the legendary actor by author Bernard Judge. In addition to portraying the APOCALYPSE NOW and THE GODFATHER alum, Zane will also produce. Set to write and direct the film is Bill Fishman, who according to Variety, will adapt the novel that “tells the story of how Brando plucked Judge, an obscure but idealistic Los Angeles architect from his stable existence and convinced him that he should build the world’s first ecologically perfect retreat on a tiny and uninhabitable Tahitian island.”
In the past, Zane and Fishman had worked together on the 1993 Western POSSE, a rough an tumble film directed by Mario Van Peebles that centers on a group of mostly black infantrymen who return from the Spanish-American War with a cache of gold. They travel to the West where their leader searches for the men who lynched his father. Fishman co-executive produced the film which starred Peebles, Stephen Baldwin, Charles Lane, Tommy ‘Tiny’ Lister, Big Daddy Kane, Blair Underwood, Melvin Van Peebles, and Zane, as a character named Colonel Graham.
According to the outlet, WALTZING WITH BRANDO will take place primarily between 1969 and 1974, a time when Brando was gearing up for his iconic role as Don Vito Corleone in Francis Ford Coppola’s THE GODFATHER, and as Paul for Bernardo Bertolucci‘s romantic drama LAST TANGO IN PARIS. As WALTZING WITH BRANDO plays out, audiences will get to see Zane (as Brando) interacting with Judge as they orchestrate plans for a private paradise getaway. The part of Judge has yet to be cast.
Do you think Zane is a good fit to play Brando? It’s funny, I’ve never thought that the two actors look anything alike until this very moment. And now that I’ve seen it, it’s going to be very difficult to unsee it. Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.