Last week, rumours began to spread that hoax rapper and not-so-retired actor Joaquin Phoenix was being courted by Timur Bekmambetov and 20th Century Fox to play Henry Sturgess in Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. Well, it looks like Phoenix put the phone down on them and threw the flowers they sent in the bin, because Variety is reporting that An Education’s Dominic Cooper is now in final negotiations to take the role.
Sturgess is a key character in Seth Graham-Smith’s novel (which the writer himself has adapted for the screen): a somewhat friendlier vampire than most, he saves young Abe’s life in the middle of a fight. He then proceeds to mentor the lad in the ways of understanding and, more importantly, killing fanged fiends. His diaries serve as the fictional basis for the book.
And he’s not the only one looking to take part: The Hurt Locker’s Anthony Mackie is also close to a deal to play Abe’s best mate, Will. Which will be an interesting dynamic given the film’s Civil War setting.
Benjamin Walker is already place as Lincoln and Bekmambetov is in pre-production now, aiming for a set release date of June 22, 2012.