Thanks to Kickstarter, Sean Bean may be returning to his favorite role of “miserable historical figure who dies a violent death.”
If it reaches its funding goal of $250,000, Enemy of Man will be a retelling of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, with Sean Bean in the title role. It’s already inviting comparisons to Game of Thrones, partly due to the grimy, corpse-strewn aesthetic and partly because there are two GoT actors in central roles: Sean Bean (Ned Stark) and Charles Dance (Tywin Lannister). The cast also includes Harry Potter’s Rupert Grint.
So far, about eight minutes of test footage have been filmed, with an edited segment released as a trailer. If this is anything to go by, we can expect a traditionally bloody Macbeth, plus a lot of mud, fire, and medieval armor.
This isn’t the first Kickstarter movie to feature famous actors, but it differs from things like Veronica Mars in that it isn’t really catering to a youthful, Internet-savvy audience. Sean Bean may have a certain fanboy draw thanks to things like Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones, but this is still basically a traditional indie movie starring a selection of middle-aged British character actors, rather than an attempt to leverage an online fanbase.
Not that this is a bad thing. Kickstarter was designed with this kind of project in mind: an interesting idea that people will pay to see (i.e. Sean Bean as a gritty, violent Macbeth), but probably wouldn’t get the funding elsewhere. In this case, Enemy of Man was vanishingly unlikely to get picked up by a major studio because it’s headed up by a first-time director, and there’s another Macbeth movie in the works starring Michael Fassbender. But that doesn’t mean people won’t pay to see this one as well.
At the moment, their pledge total is edging towards $50,000, with 25 days to go. Not bad, for a play that’s already been adapted for the big screen countless time before.
Photo via Kickstarter