Lionsgate has entered into negotiations with Rogue One: A Star Wars Story star Ben Mendelsohn to play the iconic role of the Sheriff of Nottingham in their highly-anticipated Robin Hood: Origins. If a deal is finalized, he will join a cast that includes Taron Egerton as Robin Hood, Eve Hewson as Maid Marian, Jamie Foxx as Little John and Jamie Dornan as Will Scarlett, the half-brother of the title character. It remains to be seen how many more characters are needed to be cast at this time.
Variety reports that the story centers on Robin Hood as a “war-hardenned crusader,” who joins a Moorish commander in an ambitious revolt against the British monarchy. Previous reports have compared this story to The Dark Knight trilogy, with this movie providing an origin story for the title character. These new plot details seem to conflict with previous reports, though.
Earlier reports have claimed that this story takes place after Robin Hood finishes fighting in The Crusades, and returns home to his beloved Sherwood Forest, which he finds has become overrun with corruption and evil. He forms a merry band of outlaws to take back his homeland. Those plot details were never confirmed, though, so we’ll have to wait and see if more updates about the story are released. We also reported back in February that this project has some competition in the form of a futuristic Robin Hood movie that is in the works at Lionsgate.
Otto Bathurst, best known for directing episodes of the hit British series Peaky Blinders, is directing from a script by Joby Harold. The screenwriter is also working on another origin story, Warner Bros.’ King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, the first of a proposed seven-movie franchise that will follow the legend of King Arthur, played by Charlie Hunnam. Leonardo DiCaprio is producing with his Appian Way partner Jennifer Davisson, alongside Safe House’s Joby Harold, Tory Tunnell and Basil Iwanyk.
It remains to be seen if other iconic characters such as Friar Tuck, Alan-a-Dale or David of Doncaster will be cast in this big-screen adventure. The studio recently set a March 23, 2018 release date for Robin Hood: Origins, which puts it up against 20th Century Fox’s Annubis, Columbia Pictures’ Peter Rabbit and an untitled project from DreamWorks Animation. Ben Mendelsohn portrays the villainous Director Orson Krennic in the first Star Wars spin-off Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, which hits theaters December 16. He will also play Nolan Sorrento in Steven Spielberg’s highly-anticipated adaptation Ready Player One, which hits theaters on March 30, 2018.