Hot on the heels of the announcement that AMC will be making six episodes of Frank Darabont's Walking Dead TV series is the rumor that Johnny Lee Miller might be playing the main character, undead-slayer Rick Grimes.
According to a press release from AMC, the monthly black and white written comic penned by Robert Kirkman has a six-episode order. The cable channel is planning on launching the new series during its Fearfest week, which usually runs during the Halloween week of October. Production will begin in June in Atlanta, which is only right, since that's where the comic also takes place.
Meanwhile, Bloody Disgusting is reporting that the man front runner for the lead role in this bloody apocalypse is Johnny Lee Miller, best known for his work as the title character on Eli Stone. Here's a side-by-side of the two. This is also the "hardest" pic of Miller I could find.
We're not entirely sure how to feel about this casting — Miller made many people fall in love with him on Eli, but we only know him from his work dancing around with Katie Holmes, his role in Hackers, playing Sick Boy and from a few other Jane Austen-eque roles. Rick is a cop, before the zombie attack takes place. The comics begin with Rick waking up in the hospital from a coma, and walking into a world filled with the undead. He picks up, and sets off looking for his family, a wife and a son. Rick becomes a no-nonsense leader of sorts, and has the heavy burden of making most of the decisions for the group of survivors he collects along his travels. The interesting thing about this novel isn't so much the violence, which is gruesome, to be for sure, but the conflicts between the characters. Each character is thrown into one horrifying scenario after the other, and the mental toll it takes on each person manifests in various ways. Can Miller pull off this insanely complex role, combining hero, father, leader, decision maker, zombie-killer, and death-dealer? We're really not sure. Thank goodness Darabont is writing and directing, and we trust his vision for the series...for now.
The good news is Jon Bernthal, has been cast as Rick's pre-apocalyptic police partner, Shane, as we mentioned in morning spoilers yesterday. And if you've been following The Pacific, you're well aware that this actor can bring it, hard. Which is actually the sort of actor this part will need for his major role in the first installment.