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Clooney in Talks as Man From U.N.C.L.E.

Clooney in Talks as Man From U.N.C.L.E.

Thompson on Hollywood

I was so fond of The Man from U.N.C.L.E. when I was a kid that I named my two kittens Solo and Kuryakin. The Man from U.N.C.L.E. is yet another studio TV remake that begs the question: will anyone under 50 remember the title?

But things are looking up now that George Clooney is in talks to star in Steven Soderbergh’s film adaptation of the classic spy vs. spy series, reports The Playlist. The two men are long-time collaborators: they worked together as director and actor on Solaris and The Good German, and partnered on many productions during their tenure running their former production company, including Syriana and Good Night, And Good Luck.

The Man From U.N.C.L.E. is still in early stages, but The Playlist confirms that Warner Bros. has approved Soderbergh’s “original take on the material, which would not modernize the film and keep it set in the director’s beloved 1960s (one just needs to take a look at The Limey for how much affection the lenser has for this era of filmmaking).” Soderbergh may want to throw out the existing scripts and start adapting from scratch. As always, the workaholic director is busy: coming up is Haywire (spring), Contagion (fall) and Liberace, set to film mid-late next year.

Plenty of time for U.N.C.L.E. to marinate.

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Clooney is now too old to play Napoleon Solo. 15 years ago, even 10 years ago, he would have been perfect, but he had now aged out of the part.

I am glad to hear the movie will likely retain the 1960s timeframe since, without that Cold War backdrop, the whole idea of an American and a Russian agent working side-by-side to promote world order loses something. But no Clooney as Solo please. Instead let’s get in younger actors to create new takes on the Napoleon and Illya that are consistent with the kind of physical action that was always part of MFU the series.

Keil Shults

What’s the deal with Soderbergh’s Spalding Gray documentary, which I believe is called “And Everything Is Going Fine?” Has it even been released, is it getting a release date, would it be eligible for Oscar consideration, etc.?


Oh, and give Stefanie Powers (who just made her cabaret debut in New York) a cameo as “The Girl from U.N.C.L.E.”


Clooney’s the one actor I would pick to play Solo. I’m in. I hope they give cameos to Robert Vaughn and David McCallum. “U.N.C.L.E.” was my favorite show as an adolescent. I would love to hear the Jerry Goldsmith theme music again.

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