Freeman replaced as Patterson's Alex Cross
Morgan Freeman was known as the screen incarnation of James Patterson's Dr. Alex Cross, the lead character of some of his most successful novels and starred in Kiss the Girls and Along Came a Spider.
Now though a new Cross novel is being adapted and the news is that Morgan Freeman won't be the one taking the helm, instead it's the superb British actor, Idris Elba.
The next film will be adapted from the James Patterson novel Cross (Amazon.co.uk / Amazon.com) which sees the lead character tracking down a serial rapist. The film is going to be directed by David Twohy who is also doing a rewrite of the script that Kerry Williamson wrote.
The news that Idris Elba is taking over from Morgan Freeman comes from Deadline Hollywood Daily, and it's great news for Elba who has been going from strength to strength over the past few years. From The Wire to roles in American Gangster, RocknRolla and lately The Losers, and now taking over from Morgan Freeman as the leading character in a potentially huge franchise already on it's third film.
Apart from the positives for Elba, there's a great positive for the Cross franchise itself. Moving from Freeman to Elba gives the chance for the franchise to get a little darker, a little grittier, and above all younger. No offence to Freeman, but a younger lead could well attract a younger audience and definitely sustain a longer franchise.