Pacino to play Napoleon
I keep getting into conversations about two great actors, Al Pacino and Robert De Niro, and I controversially always say that they were once great and have faded heavily since their heady character acting days. Now De Niro plays poor comedy roles and Pacino is fading fast in poor thrillers and half hearted roles.
There is some light over the horizon, particularly for Al Pacino in a couple of meaty roles, and today we hear that he's going to be playing Napoleon, however this isn't the meaty role you might first think.
When I heard that it was a Napoleon role I was excited, I thought that we might get to see Al Pacino playing a strong character role and bringing to life Napoleon. However the story from The Hollywood Reporter tells us that the film is going to be based on the adaptation of Staton Rabin's children's book Betsy and the Emperor (Amazon.co.uk / Amazon.com).
The story tells of the fourteen year old Betsy Balcombe who has returned to her home on a remote island from boarding school in London. Her island just happens to be the island that Napoleon Bonaparte has been exiled to after his battle at Waterloo. While her family are scared of the great leader, she is not, and begins a close friendship with the man.
The novel is fiction, but is based on actual events and the real Betsy Balcombe and is supposedly very closely researched.
John Curran, who directed The Painted Veil, is set to direct Pacino in the film, but I can't help but feel that this might turn out to be a much more light hearted look at the ex-Emperor and his time spent in exile, and another half-hearted role for Al Pacino.