Chris Pratt really is an amazing actor with a remarkable range. He’s been a lovable, good-hearted moron on Parks and Rec for seven seasons; a memorable dick in Wanted; a full-on action-comedy hero with heart in Guardians of the Galaxy; a battle-hardened soldier in Zero Dark Thirty; and a ball player in Moneyball. Action, comedy, and straight drama are no problem for this guy. If you need any more proof that his career has skyrocketed over the last few years, the fact that Steven Spielberg is reportedly considering him as the new Indiana Jones should convince you.
I have no doubt he’d be a good Indy, but this is one franchise that really should be LEFT ALONE. The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull proved two things: Harrison Ford can still carry the role (seriously, he had some great sequences, they made good use of his age, and some parts of the film were still solid), and aliens/refrigerators have no place in Indy’s world.
Right now, Pratt has a successful “original” franchise with Guardians (sure, it’s an adaptation of a comic, but it hasn’t been done on screen before, and it wasn’t even a hugely popular comic), and with any luck, Jurassic World will be a successful continuation of that franchise and will keep the door open for more entries. I’m sure he has no shortage of other offers on the table, either.
If he wants to get in on another franchise (can’t blame him for that), I think he’d make a GREAT Nathan Drake in the upcoming Uncharted movie. Much like Indy, Drake races through exotic locales in search of semi-mythical treasures while fighting off natural and supernatural baddies. But he’s still a distinct character in that he’s a little more morally ambiguous (at least compared to Indy), he’s cockier and his humour is wittier, and his adventures take place in a modern context.
More importantly, Nathan Drake is a character that we haven’t seen on the big screen before! Hollywood likes remakes and reboots because execs think they’re “safer” because the ideas have worked before and have a built-in fan base. Blockbusters are expensive as hell, so who can blame them for wanting to protect their investment? But Guardians of the Galaxy should help them remember that audiences LOVE new ideas, new characters, new worlds, as long as they’re done well! At the moment, they/we trust Chris Pratt to deliver high-quality original ideas. If he signs on to do Indy, I have no doubt he’d do a good job, but I think he’d lose a bit of his reputation as a mark of originality. Also, there have been three award-winning, story-driven Uncharted games, with another highly-anticipated entry on the way. There’s a really strong fan-base out there that would love to see this character done well, and Pratt would be a great guy to introduce Drake to larger audiences. And I’m sure it doesn’t hurt that the guy currently signed to direct Uncharted already worked with Pratt on two episodes of Parks and Rec.
It’s also probably a better opportunity career-wise for Pratt. Despite some strong aspects of the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, it was definitely a letdown for fans, and I can’t imagine it won over a lot of newcomers. A second misfire would be a disaster, and recasting Indy, even with a solid actor like Pratt, makes it more of a gamble. Even if it’s a success, every future Indy will be compared to Harrison Ford; there’s more freedom with Uncharted.
Granted I say all this without having any idea how the script for Indy 5 compares to the Uncharted script, or if either of them have even been written already. But looking at the material that already exists in the Uncharted series, the potential for a truly amazing film (and franchise) is definitely there.
Nathan Drake could be this generation’s Indiana Jones, and Chris Pratt could bring him to life.
Chris Pratt, if you’re out there, I’m a huge fan, and I beg you, please show us something new! And yes, I’m the same guy who tweeted this to you earlier today:
This is what happens when I talk movies and I’m not restricted to 140 characters.
*Earlier today I was checking the latest movie news at Comingsoon.net, as I do about 20 times a day, when I came across an article that featured comments made by Pratt about the Indy role at last night’s Oscars. I started to leave a comment on the article, and next thing I know I’ve written the entire post you just read. I decided to post the oversized comment anyway, so the above post originally appeared in the comments of the article at Comingsoon.net.
What do you think? Should Chris Pratt take on the Indy role? Do you think he’d make a good Nathan Drake? Do you think the Uncharted movie will be good? Leave some comments below and let us know!