Pattinson, 28, has played supporting roles in his last four movies, “The Rover,” “Maps to the Stars” and the soon to be released “Queen of Desert” and “Life.”
He hasn’t had a lead role since his turn in the quirky 2012 David Cronenberg film “Cosmopolis.” Critics like it, but the film bombed among those who saw it, according to rottentomatoes, which tracks movie reviews.
It also bombed at the box office. It grossed just $6.3 million worldwide. More than three-quarters of the ticket sales were overseas.
The “Twilight” star, however, certainly hasn’t lacked for work. He’ll play the lead role in his upcoming film “The Childhood of a Leader,” a historical drama based on a Jean Paul Sarte short story. But once again, it’s a quirky film.
The film is set in 1919 following World War I and is filmed in English and French. It focuses on a young boy who grows into a megalomaniacal leader caught up in the rise of Fascism following the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, according to Director Brady Corbet.
The last period film in which he starred, 2012’s “Bel Ami,” bombed with both critics and audiences, despite an all-star cast that included Uma Thurman and Christina Ricci.
To his credit, Pattinson has steered clear of big-box office superhero films and apocalyptic teen movies like “Hunger Games” in favor of more intellectual, indie films. And, there’s certainly no shortage of those for an actor with his marquee value.
He reportedly has two new films lined up “The Lost City of Z” and “The Trap.”
But whether he’ll ever live up to his potential remains to be seen.
Harington, on the other hand, is coming off a successful run on the hit HBO series “Game of Thrones.” Through five seasons as the sympathetic character Jon Snow, he’s built an impressive fan base.
Now with the death of his character, he’s free to pursue meatier roles in Hollywood.
He previously starred in the BBC docudrama,”Pompeii: The Last Day” and appears in three films this year, American fanasty fim, “Seventh Son,” British spy thriller “Spooks: The Greater Good” and television film “7 Days In Hell.”
The comparison with Pattinson was brought into focus after Harington was tapped to replace him in the upcoming Martin Koolhoven western thriller “Brimestone.” Pattinson would have played another supporting role. The part is an outlaw opposite “Rover” co-star Guy Pearce and Dakota Fanning, who also replaced Mia Wasikowska at the last minute.
Rob also dropped out of the production just as filming was getting under way. No reason was given, but Producer Els Vandevorst didn’t seem too happy about it.
He said in a prepared statement:
“Mia Wasikowska left the film due to unforeseen personal circumstances and Dakota Fanning immediately jumped into the leading starring role. Kit Harington was so consistently passionate about the script that his enthusiasm and total creative commitment made him a must for the role which had been lined up by Pattinson.”
Pattinson may have been too busy with other work, or he may have wanted to scale back a bit to spend more time with his fiancee FKA Twigs. But as they say one actor’s loss is often another’s gain.
The role may give Harington the leg up he wants in Hollywood. And, Pattinson may be ready for a well-deserved break.
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