With Baz Luhrmann being irritatingly cutesy and coy regarding his presumably forthcoming adaptation of “The Great Gatsby” — all he’ll really admit these days is that it’s something he’s researching — what we know for certain isn’t much, except that Carey Mulligan has been selected to play Daisy in the film. And while Leonardo DiCaprio and Tobey Maguire have workshopped the project with Luhrmann in the roles of Jay Gatsby and Nick Carraway, and are expected to take on those parts, there is another male lead in the film and Bradley Cooper wants it.
In an interview with the New York Times, the actor reveals his desire to play Tom Buchanan and what attracts him to the part. “To me, he’s the best character in the book. He’s so complicated,” Cooper said. “He’s xenophobic, he’s an alcoholic, but he also understands some profound stuff about class. Whoever plays it has to take a gentle hand, because it could so easily be stock, where he’s a rich jerk you don’t identify with at all.”
In case you slept through English class, Tom Buchanan is Daisy’s husband, a millionaire cad and racist who cheats on her with Myrtle but who also grows jealous when the titular Gatsby reveals his love for her. So basically, he’s sort of like Cooper’s character in “Wedding Crashers” but even more hateful.
However, even though Cooper wants the role he admits it’s a bit of a long shot right now. “I don’t even know if I’m on Lurhmann’s radar,” he said. “Maybe he’ll read this article after the role’s cast and say, ‘Oh. Ha. Yeah, that guy was never going to get it.’ ” Guess we’ll have to wait and see.
Production on “The Great Gatsby” is tentatively set to begin in August in Australia but with Luhrmann’s never-ending process in shaping the film before it rolls, it remains to be seen if that timeline will hold.