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William Hurt Joins ‘The Host’ With Saoirse Ronan

William Hurt Joins 'The Host' With Saoirse Ronan

With ‘The Twilight Saga‘ wrapping up next November with ‘Breaking Dawn – Part 2,’ Stephenie Meyer fans will no doubt be tweaking for more fantastically romantic/yet slightly scary cinematic adaptations of her work. They’re in for a treat because less than six months after the last ‘Twilight’ movie comes out, Meyer’s latest novel, “The Host,” comes to life on the big screen on March 29, 2013.

The film tells the story of Melanie Stryder (Saoirse Ronan), a young woman whose brain becomes possessed by the soul of an alien. This is where Meyer gets people. Melanie can’t just have an alien inside of her, it has to be the soul of an alien. 

William Hurt is in talks to join the project as Jeb, eccentric uncle to Melanie. “Jeb is one of the grizzled leaders of the human survivalists fighting the alien invasion,” explains EW who broke the news. Alien invasion? This adaptation is starting to sound pretty expensive, and maybe even a little interesting.

“The Host” is being written and directed by Andrew Niccol, whose “In Time” was a financial and critical disappointment. He’s also the writer/director of “Gattaca” and the writer of “The Truman Show.” The latter is a great example of how Niccol can operate strictly inside the studio system. Granted, that was an original screenplay and director Peter Weir dealt with the on set pressure, but in constructing the script, and tailoring it to Weir’s needs, Niccol thrived. Perhaps the restrictions of a studio film will liberate him to make great work again. It doesn’t hurt to imagine.

Max Irons and Jake Abel will play the love interests who vie for Saoirse’s affection, ala Team Jacob and Team Edward. Meyer has not written any future “The Host” books (yet), but that won’t stop the studio from making sequels, we’re sure.

Hurt had a nice turn a few years ago on the FX series “Damages” and this year he played Henry “Call me Hank” Paulson in the HBO film “Too Big to Fail.” And while this may seem like an odd move for an established dude like Hurt, he’s got that Academy Award keeping him warm at night.

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