-Cluny the Utterly and Deservedly Dead
February 16th, 2003
¤ Elijah Wood (Frodo Baggins in Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring) as Matthias the Mouse: These two characters are so alike, with the same innocence, determination, and courage that I can't think of anyone else who could voice Matthias.
¤ Michael Wincott (Guy of Gisborne in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves) as Cluny the Rat: You may not recognize this character actor's name, but his rough, tough voice is the very sound of evil.
¤ Here I had Richard Harris, who played Albus Dumbledore in Harry Potter, as the wise Abbot Mortimer. Out of respect for the late actor I won't replace him.
¤ John Cleese (Sir Lancelot in Monty Python and the Holy Grail) as Basil Stag Hare the Hare: Need I say more?
¤ Sean Connery (Jim Malone in The Untouchables) as Brother Methuselah the Mouse: Call me crazy, but ever since I read the first novel so many years ago, it has always been the original Bond who I've pictured doing this role.
¤ Kate Winslet (Rose DeWitt Bukater in Titanic) as Jess the Squirrel: She has just the right amount of both nobility and street smarts to pull off this role.
¤ David O'Hara (Stephen in Braveheart) as Michael the Squirrel: Sure, he was barely mentioned in the book as Mr. Squirrel, but I would expand his role in the movie, simply to give Silent Sam a father figure for this film and for the sequel. And the crazy Irishman from Braveheart would play a perfect roguish ne'er-do-well squirrel.
¤ Sam Neill (Dr. Alan Grant in Jurassic Park) as John Churchmouse the Mouse: His learned accent would work nicely for this middle-aged scholar.
¤ Bob Hoskins (Smee in Hook) as Foremole the Mole: Don't believe me? Watch his last scene in Hook, when he's in the real world outside pushing bottles with a broom. Just listen to his voice, and you'll understand.
¤ Derek Jacobi (Senator Gracchus in Gladiator) as Brother Mordalfus the Mouse: His intelligent, Shakespearian voice would lend a lot of power to this character, a much more pivotal role in the whole series than Mortimer himself.
¤ Brian Jacques (Author) as Ambrose Spike the Hedgehog: I came upon this epiphany when thinking that Jacques should have a cameo role in every one of the Redwall movies. He works perfectly for this rough-around-the-edges cellarkeeper.
¤ David Calder (Argos in Jason and the Argonauts) as Friar Hugo the Mouse: His booming, pompous voice would be an excellent fit for this character, though I would take the Redwall TV route and replace him with Cornflower in the belltower duel scene.
¤ Andy Serkis (Gollum in The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring) as Asmodeus the Adder: Just listen to the range of his vocal talents in Fellowship, and you can see how well he'd do with the similarly-sounding adder.
¤ Richard Bremmer (Skald in The Thirteenth Warrior) as Redtooth the Rat: Though his role as the tattooed Viking in Warrior is short and over relatively quickly, his harsh voice is great for this kind of character, better than that nasal geek who got clocked by a cauldron from the cartoon.
¤ Tommy Flanagan (Morrison in Braveheart) as Killconey the Ferret: His strong Scottish accent is great for the comic ferret minion, and I would definately give him the scars he has on his real face.
¤ John DeSantis (Ragnar in The Thirteenth Warrior) as Fangburn the Rat: Yep, that's another actor from Warrior, this time the gruesomely beheaded Viking. His tough, older voice is good, implying a long lifetime of violent living.
¤ Patrick Malahide (Lachaise in The World Is Not Enough) as Scumnose the Rat: If you've seen all of the movies including these actors already, then you've probably noticed that lots of the villains are from various countries, and have various accents. I feel that it gives them more depth, as though they are a band of outcasts from every shore banded together. In his case, I would have Malahide keep the Swiss banker's cowardly hiss.
¤ Michael Byrne (Colonel Vogel in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade) as Darkclaw the Rat: Another non-British accent, this time German. Also, another older voice. I think of the sullen Darkclaw as the old veteran of the horde, with more experience than the rest, and also more cruel.
¤ Oded Fehr (Ardeth Bay in The Mummy) as Frogblood the Rat: Yep, that The Mummy. This actor has also done work playing Italians as well as Arabs, and I can see his rat dressed in gladiator armor and spouting curses in Italian.
¤ Peter Stormare (Lev Andropov in Armageddon) as Cheesethief the Rat: This Russian could add an extra level of deviousness to Cheesethief, as he has shown in previous shifty roles.
¤ Goldie (Bullion in The World Is Not Enough) as Mangefur the Rat: This gold-toothed twerp has a good minion voice, good for a scrawny rat like Mangefur.
¤ Colin Farrell (Lieutenant Thomas Hart in Hart's War) as Chickenhound the Fox: Sure, he's Irish, but he has proven very talented at using other accents. And his deliverys are always top-notch, to the point where casting directors are lining up to put this up-and-coming actor in their movies.
¤ Miranda Richardson (Mary Van Tassel in Sleepy Hollow) as Sela the Fox: Her crafty witch in Tim Burton's Headless Horseman tale won me over. She's no stranger to the dark side, so her doing yet another backstabber is no problem.
¤ Peter Serafinowicz (Voice of Darth Maul in Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace) as Shadow the Rat: "Like a whisper of wet silk across smooth slate." Just listen to Maul's few lines, and tell me if you can think of any voice that resembles this description from the book more.
¤ Anthony Daniels (C-3P0 in Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope) as Squire Julian Gingivere the Cat: Another Star Wars veteran, his prim and proper yet slightly neurotical voice is perfect for the upper-class cat.
¤ Brian Cox (Argyle Wallace in Braveheart) as Captain Snow the Snowy Owl: His ancient Scottish rumble from Braveheart seems perfect for a northerner, especially this particularly menacing one. And Cox would do much more menacing than that ponderously slow owl voice from the show.
¤ Angus MacFadyen (Robert the Bruce in Braveheart) as Ghost of Martin the Mouse: Here's where the controversy will really spring up...I always thought of Martin having a Scottish accent, because he was from the far north. And I don't know of any other Scottish actor who can bring the calmness and nobility to Martin as MacFadyen could.
And so you have it. Though these dream castings are probably far from what many of you have imagined, I hope this has broached this subject in your own minds. Who would you like to see doing the voices of Martin, or Cluny, or 43rd Rat To Get Disembowled By Cluny? Hopefully I will return with the cast lists for other Redwall books, depending on reactions to this editorial and if I really want to cut and paste until the cows come home again. Well, this is Cluny the Utterly and Deservedly Dead signing off. Remember, sign that petition for a soundtrack!
-Cluny the Utterly and Deservedly Dead