Monday, October 3, 2011

Brenda Novak's "Inside"

Brenda Novak is the national bestselling author of over three dozen books.

Here she shares some ideas for casting an adaptation of Inside, the first book of the Bulletproof Series:
If Hollywood were to make one of my books into a movie, Inside would be the story I’d love to see portrayed on the big screen--and yet Virgil’s character would be, by far, the most difficult to cast. So much of the story hinges on finding someone who can be believably seasoned and “hard” (seeing as Virgil’s an ex-convict) yet noble, vulnerable and wounded beyond his control at the same time.

At first, Vin Diesel (The Fast and the Furious) came to mind, but he’s almost as old as I am. Next I thought of Jason Statham (The Transporter). He’s every bit as tough as Vin but better looking. Hmm…getting warmer. Or so I thought until I pulled Jason up on Wikipedia. Like Vin, he’s 44. Too old to play Virgil, who went to prison at 18 for killing his stepfather and gets exonerated fourteen years later. Virgil has to be a muscular, hard-edged actor with a strong, silent-type of demeanor, someone in the neighborhood of 32. If I go much older he’ll look like an idiot for being indoctrinated in a prison gang in the first place. So maybe Chris Helmsworth (Thor)? Or Tom Hardy (Inception)?

Casting Pretty Boy, Virgil’s best friend and fellow gangmember (before he also tries to get out), would be almost as challenging. Or maybe not. Wentworth Miller of Prison Break fame would work. Although he might be a touch old for the part, he looks much younger than he is, and Prison Break was the inspiration for this novel, so it seems to fit. Yes, Chris Helmsworth for Virgil and Wentworth Miller for Pretty Boy. Now we’re rolling….

But who would play the female lead? Peyton would require a woman who was attractive, professional and by-the-book. Someone who could survive in a man’s world and tolerate the difficulties of running one of the most notorious Supermax prisons in the country while still managing to retain her humanity. Peyton is sexy, but not a bombshell. Anyone too curvy would diminish her sense of professionalism. So as much as I like Charlize Theron for this role I’d probably pass over her in favor of someone like AJ Cook or Blake Lively. No wait…Jennifer Connelly. She’d be perfect.

Now what to do with the villains? This I will have to leave up to suggestions. I’m not familiar enough with Hollywood and the available talent to cast the bad guys, especially because there are several (they are members of the prison gang that don’t want to let Virgil and Pretty Boy walk away). “Blood in, blood out.” That’s their motto and they mean it. Ink, who’s bald, muscular and tatted up from head to toe, is one of my most believable villains. That’s probably the most consistent comment I get about Inside, so the actor would have to be equally convincing.
Visit Brenda Novak's website.

--Marshal Zeringue