Osy Ikhile On For In The Heart Of The Sea

And Ben Whishaw's confirmed as Herman Melville

One is a young actor who is scoring what will be his biggest break yet. The other is a young actor who is already accustomed to large-scale films. There’s good news for both Osy Ikhile and Ben Whishaw, as Ikhile has won a role in Ron Howard’s In The Heart Of The Sea and Whishaw has locked in a deal to play Herman Melville in the film.

Ikhile, who has worked on the likes of The Fear, Misfits, Fresh Meat and Twenty Twelve on TV and has appeared in films such as Victim and School Without Walls, is set to play a sailor named Peterson in the fact-based tale.

In The Heart Of The Sea, which has been adapted from Nathaniel Philbrick’s novel by Charles Leavitt, chronicles what happens to the crew of the Essex, a whaling ship attacked and sunk by a giant sperm whale in 1820. The men were stranded at sea for 90 days, and eventually had to resort to cannibalism to survive.

The real-life story inspired Melville to write Moby Dick, which makes us think Whishaw (who had been negotiating to take part) will be part of a Life Of Pi-style wraparound device to help unspool the drama. They join Chris Hemsworth, Ben Walker, Cillian Murphy, Tom Holland, Frank Dillane and Sam Keeley in the film, which Howard will start shooting in London this autumn.