What always fascinated me about 'The Fall Guy' was that Colt Seavers wasn't content just being a stuntman, which, to a seven-year-old television watcher, seemed like a very cool job. No, Colt also moonlighted as a bounty hunter for extra cash. In 1981, when 'The Fall Guy' premiered, riding the wave of Boba Fett fever, bounty hunting was also a very badass profession. And Colt did both! And that's cool! (Believe it or not, 'The Fall Guy' was a very cool show -- it didn't hurt the star Lee Majors had recently been married to Farrah Fawcett and sang his own terrible but indisputably catchy theme song. Or, also, that the lead character's name was "Colt.") Now, according to Deadline, Martin Campbell -- who saved the James Bond franchise and killed the Green Lantern franchise -- is in "early discussions" to helm a big-screen Colt Seavers adventure. As an aficionado of 'The Fall Guy,' (trust me, I don't get the chance to brag about that tidbit very often) here are my humble, but quite serious suggestions for the cast of Campbell's movie adaptation of 'The Fall Guy.'
Mel Gibson as Colt Seavers
Hear me out on this one. First, yes: Gibson is older than Majors was during the run of the show -- but, at the same time, it's not like Majors was the spitting image of youth: Majors might have been only 42 when he first played Colt, but he looked quite a bit older. And as far as I can tell, that's the only real issue here and for the life of me I can't think of any other controversies that might keep Gibson out of this role --- so, moving on! What? Did I forget about something?
Oh, yeah, that. Well, yeah, that's an issue. But! Gibson is experiencing a small amount of goodwill following Robert Downey Jr.'s impassioned speech a couple of weeks ago after Gibson presented Downey with the American Cinematheque award. Also, Martin Campbell directed Gibson in his first comeback vehicle (of two, so far), 'Edge of Darkness.' But, most important, if Gibson is ever going to make a true comeback, this is the kind of role that he needs -- an already established light role that would, in effect, cause the Gibson that everyone still despises to disappear into the guy wearing that blue stuntman jacket. Think Gibson as Bret Maverick. Hell, let him sing the theme song, too.
Armie Hammer as Howie Munson
It was always kind of odd how Colt would refer to his younger cousin Howie as "kid," considering that Douglas Barr was well into his 30s for the duration of the series. Hammer would give the two main characters a legitimate age difference and his profession, as "stuntman in training," does now seem a slightly more realistic. Also, yeah, they do kind of look similar.
Blake Lively as Jody Banks
Another Campbell disciple -- only this time from 'Green Lantern' -- Lively (an opinion based pretty much solely on her role in 'The Town') at least has the ability to bring some weight to a role that -- let's face it -- was only there in the first place as a way to show off an attractive woman in a bikini.
Famke Janssen as Samantha "Big Jack" Jack
During the course of five seasons of 'The Fall Guy,' the role of "person who gives Colt his bounty hunting assignments' was a revolving door, of sorts. Markie Post's Terri Shannon replaced Jo Ann Pflug's "Big Jack" after the first season. To make matters more confusing: at the start of the third season, Terri Shannon's last name was changed to Michaels with no explanation -- even though Post continued to play the role. Post left 'The Fall Guy' in 1985 to join the cast of 'Night Court' and her character was replaced in the final season by Pearl Sperling, played by the late Nedra Volz (best known for playing Phillip Drummond's housekeeper, Adelaide, on 'Diff'rent Strokes' after Edna Garrett left to accept a job as a housemother at a boarding school).
For the sake of this film, let's drop the Sperling character, as she was only involved with the show while it was in its death knell. "Big Jack" is a "tough as nails" character -- her nickname is "Big Jack,' for Christ's sake -- and has a no-nonsense approach to the shenanigans of Colt Seavers. And, yes, someone like Famke Janssen immediately comes to mind. Now, for Terri Shannon (or Terri Michaels), the character isn't quite as hard lined...
Elisabeth Shue as Terri Michaels
Yeah, sure, in the television series Michaels and "Big Jack" never meet. Whatever. In the new version they are partners because, frankly, 'The Fall Guy' has a surprisingly low number of characters. Also, it's always a delight to see Elisabeth Shue, who would be quite perfect taking over a role never made famous by Markie Post. And, if nothing else, this would set up Shue for the role of Christine Sullivan when the eventual 'Night Court' movie happens. (If it hasn't already. Honestly, there's probably a 20 percent chance that it's already been made and I'm too afraid to check.)
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