After months of speculation, it’s been confirmed that Robert Pattinson will be portraying the role of Mr. Darcy in the upcoming Warner Bros. adaptation of Jane Austen’s classic Pride and Prejudice. Although the actor’s representatives have yet to comment on the exciting casting news, we can assume that he’s quite excited to be playing the part.
Why Mr. Darcy?
First off, let’s talk about the role itself. Darcy was first introduced to us in Pride and Prejudice, an 1813 novel by Jane Austen. Regarded as one of the greatest English novels of all time, the original version of Pride and Prejudice was written in the form of a letter and therefore was never supposed to be read by anyone but the original author and some of her closest friends. In the novel, Mr. Darcy is the man who is arrogant and proud, and he treats Elizabeth Bennet very badly. His only redeeming quality is his good looks.
Since then, the popular perception of Mr. Darcy has largely stayed the same. In 2006, Matt Damon played the title role in the film adaptation of Pride and Prejudice. The following year, Christopher Plummer narrated the classic BBC adaptation, which was then nominated for an Emmy. In 2008, Robert Pattinson was also the subject of a major motion picture, when he portrayed the sadistic and sociopathic Edward Cullen in the Twilight movie series.
It’s fair to say that Robert Pattinson’s portrayal of Mr. Darcy would not only be historic but also iconic. Being one of the most beloved characters in Austen’s epic work, the part would allow the popular actor to show a different side to the world. When discussing this very subject with the New York Times, producer Andrew Davies said, “There is something about Mr. Darcy which exudes style and panache.”
Robert Pattinson’s Performance Will Be Historic
Beyond the fact that it would be the ultimate acting challenge, portraying such a historic character could also prove to be quite profitable for Mr. Pattinson. In 2007, The New York Times estimated that his net worth was around $500 million, and in 2013, it was reported that he had an additional $200 million in the bank. If he decides to put his money where his mouth is and decide to invest in Austen’s novels and their related films, he could become quite the wealthy man.
Speaking of which, let’s talk about how much money this project is likely to make. Based on the lastest Harry Potter installment, the HPF installment, and the Twilight installment, New Moon, the gross revenue of Jane Austen’s masterwork, Pride and Prejudice, was valued at $27.6 million. Its total worldwide gross, including video-on-demand and ancillary revenue, was estimated at $44.8 million. Since he is arguably the biggest name ever to play the role of Mr. Darcy, we can assume that this project is definitely in the ballpark of the aforementioned figures.
One final thing to keep in mind is that Mr. Darcy is often considered the best role in Austen’s entire oeuvre. As a testament to his talent, in 2005, he was recognized for his portrayal of the character by being nominated for an Academy Award. This is the same award category that saw Heath Ledger’s extraordinary performance as the Joker in 2008. Let’s face facts, if Mr. Darcy’s performance in Pride and Prejudice is any indication, it will be one for the history books.