Continuing from last week, I am re-casting for the in-development “A-Team” remake/reboot. Don’t know for sure how many of the original characters will return, let alone in what gender, but I’m sticking with a “traditional” casting. In the original show, I think “Hannibal” was 10-20 years older than the other three core members. So, these should be experienced soldiers who are (or look) in their mid-30s to mid-40s.
First, the muscle of the group: Sgt. Bosco Albert “B.A.” Baracus. As per the original, he’s gotta be big and black and have a “bad attitude”. But, the character also has a soft side. Not sure if the overabundance of gold chains would still work, but maybe. Anyway, I considered both Michael Jai White (6’1″,b.1967) and Terry Crews (6’2.5″,b.1968). Either would be great, I’m sure, but they are a few years older than I’d prefer.
Instead, I suggest Bob Sapp (6’5or7″,b.1973) or Kevin “Kimbo Slice” Ferguson (6’2″,b.1974). Both Sapp and Ferguson are in their early 40s, fit the physical requirements, and are even more muscular than Mr. T was. As wrestlers, they are used to playing very physical, over-the-top characters and could have a lot of fun with the “B.A.” role, I’m sure. Ferguson is my preference, mostly ‘cuz he has that “wild man” sort of persona.
Templeton Peck may be a soldier, but he is also somewhat of a con artist, who uses his (very) good looks and charm to convince others to do or give him just about whatever he wants. He’s a snappy dresser, likes fast cars and expensive things. He’s roughly 6′ tall, in good shape but more lean than muscular. I considered both Max Brown (6’2″,b.1981) and David Paetkau (5’10”,b.1972) but eventually decided on three others as better choices.
Ian Anthony Dale (5’11”,b.1978) should be a familiar face to genre fans, having had starring or supporting roles in “Charmed”, “Surface”, “Day Break”, “The Event”, “Mortal Kombat: Legacy”, and now “Hawaii Five-O” and “Murder in the First”. He’s also a great looking guy and would be believable as Peck, who continually amazes with his ability to acquire whatever is needed for the mission. Former model Taye Diggs (5’10”,b.1971) starred in “Day Break”, Equilibrium, has played a lawyer in a couple shows, as well as voiced Marvel’s Black Panther, and now stars in “Murder in the First”. He would also be quite believable as the charming and resourceful “Faceman”.
My third choice is Michael Weatherly (6’2″,b.1968), who will soon be leaving “NCIS”. When I first started thinking about re-casting “The A-Team” a couple years ago, Weatherly was the first guy that came to mind. His “NCIS” character is a bit of a handsome rogue, after all. Yes, he is already in his late 40s, but he can pass for younger, and I just think he would be perfect to play the “Faceman”.
They don’t call H.M. Murdock “Howlin’ Mad” for nothing. Sometimes he seems quite sane — almost normal, even. Other times, he’ll go off on some oddball, Shakespearean rant or maybe demand at the top of his voice that he be given every trash bag in the place. He isn’t violent, just weird, unstable, and definitely unpredictable. On the other hand, he can fly just about anything with wings and/or rotors, which makes him quite valuable to the team. If we stick with Dwight Schultz as the model, Murdock should be lean, wiry, and quite physical.
Naturally, the first actor who came to mind for this was Jim Carrey (6’2″,b.1962). But, a) he’s too old, b) too expensive, and c) he’d probably steal the show (though that’s not necessarily a bad thing). I know there are more comedic actors out there who might be a good fit, but I had trouble coming up with many. I did, however, think of two that fit the bill. They are both in their mid-40s, which is a little older than I’d prefer. But, as long as they are fairly fit….
Matthew Lillard (6’4″,b.1970) does a lot of voice work these days, mostly as ‘Shaggy’ on various Scooby-Doo productions. But, he can also be seen on “Bosch”, and in the past he has been in “The Bridge”, Deep Dark Canyon, Return to Nim’s Island, Messages Deleted, In the Name of the King, Thir13en Ghosts, Wing Commander, SLC Punk, Scream, Hackers, etc. Some of his characters are just weird, even nuts, so… I thought of him. Silas Weir Mitchell (6’2.5or3″,b.1972or1969) is seen regularly as beloved blutbad ‘Monroe’ on “Grimm” these days, but it was his role as the psycho inmate named ‘Haywire’ on “Prison Break” that made me first think of him as a potential ‘Murdock’. Just f.y.i., he has also appeared in “Dark Skies”, The Patriot, “The X-Files”, “The Pretender”, “24”, “Birds of Prey”, Fist of the Warrior, The Gray Man, the Halloween II remake (2009), and three CSI series. On the one hand, Mitchell would make a great “Howlin’ Mad” Murdock; on the other, I’d hate to seem him leave “Grimm”.
Before we go, let’s throw in an attractive female journalist, a la Amy Allen or Tawnia Baker. I came up with two actresses I thought would do a great job in the role, though I’m sure there are others….
Scottie Thompson (5’7″,b.1981) has been seen in “NCIS”, “12 Monkeys”, “Zoo”, “The Blacklist”, “Nikita”, Skyline, Star Trek (2009), and others. I can definitely picture her as an intrepid, investigative journalist who finds herself aiding-and-abetting a group of framed do-gooders. Same goes for “One Tree Hill” alum Shantel VanSanten (5’8″,b.1985), who was most recently in “The Flash”. Prior to that, you may have seen her in The Final Destination, “Beauty and the Beast”, “The Glades”, Something Wicked, “Gang Related”, or “The Messengers”. She’s another one that I can see as a “plucky reporter”-cum-sidekick.
That about does it, ladies ‘n gents. As always, let me know what you think. ‘Til next time…