James McAvoy Wants To Play Gandalf In THE SILMARILLION

James McAvoy Wants To Play Gandalf In THE SILMARILLION

While chatting to Total Film, the X-Men: First Class actor expresses his desire to play a younger version of Gandalf the Wizard in a movie adaptation of J.R.R Tolkien's Lord Of The Rings/The Hobbit prequel (of sorts) "The Silmarillion"..

It seems James McAvoy is a Tolkien fan. In an interview with Total Film for their latest issue, the Scottish actor - who will reprise the role of Charles Xavier in X-Men: Days Of Future Past - says that he'd like to step into Middle Earth as that most famous of Wizards, Gandalf The Grey, when the mag asked which role he'd most like to tackle when he's finished his current slate. “I’d like to play Gandalf,” said McAvoy, laughing. “It’s called The Silmarillion! It’s a collection of poems and songs that chart the ancient history of Middle-earth. My true geek is coming to the fore, but they’re really, really beautiful stories. In part of that is the genesis of Gandalf, or Mithrandir, or Stormcrow, or any of his many, many names. Anyway, maybe that’s the one!” Of course there are presently no plans to bring the novel to the screen, but if the rest of The Hobbit movies are as successful as the first, who knows. Although without meaning to shatter Mr McAvoy's dreams here, I'm not actually sure Gandalf appears in it! It's been years since I read it, can any of you Tolkien buffs confirm this? Either way, I'm sure McAvoy would make a great Gandalf - but shouldn't it really be Michael Fassbender?

Posted By:
Mark Cassidy
Member Since 11/9/2008
Filed Under "Fantasy" 1/5/2013 Source: Total Film
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ManOfKrypton - 1/5/2013, 4:52 AM
Sure why not, I'd be up for seeing the Silmarillion on the Big Screen!
jj2112 - 1/5/2013, 5:00 AM
The Silmarillion will never happen, at least not for now... There are too many characters, it spans too many eras and audiences would find it confusing.
SimplyJoshuaJames - 1/5/2013, 5:01 AM
Would be awesome to see Tolkien's collected Middle Earth works to screen... There is just so much material and it's so rich I don't think I could ever get bored :)
Kaedus - 1/5/2013, 5:01 AM
Unfortunately I think the Silmarillion rights are still with the Tolkien estate and apparently they do no want to give it up.

Also, imagine trying to adapt it! Wow, one hell of a task.
ManofSteel23 - 1/5/2013, 5:03 AM
It's weird that last night while watching the hobbit I said I'd love to see a film back story of sauron and the rings n stuff,then this news comes up
jj2112 - 1/5/2013, 5:06 AM
BTW, Gandalf only appears briefly in the chronicle of The Third Age and the Rings of Power, which has already been featured in LOTR. But it would be great to see things like the war against the first Dark Lord, the fall of Numenor, Feanor and the elves...
marvel72 - 1/5/2013, 5:10 AM
i'm up for this more middle earth the better.i didn't think j.r.r tolkien finished the book,i thought he died before it was finished.
HellsHammer - 1/5/2013, 5:15 AM
Can't get enough middle earth!
rebellion - 1/5/2013, 5:22 AM
gandalf always looked lika a grandpa so it wouldn't make any sense :P
Hero020200 - 1/5/2013, 5:23 AM
I am happy about The Silmarillion coming to the big screen and I think that McAvoy is the perfect person for the role
marvel72 - 1/5/2013, 5:24 AM
@ SpecialKail

i see what you did there,funny well done.
Ficjunkie - 1/5/2013, 5:25 AM
I thought Gandalf had always looked old, it's just his human appearance
Ficjunkie - 1/5/2013, 5:26 AM
But bringing the Silmarillion to the big screen would be a dream come true, it's epic on so many levels...
Ariakas - 1/5/2013, 5:33 AM

You're right. Gandalf has, in his human body, always looked young. Maybe McAvoy has never actually read these books.
Amazo - 1/5/2013, 5:36 AM
The wizards arrival in Middle-Earth is covered briefly in Unfinished Tales.They are described as all looking old.Their minds age but not their bodies.They are physical embodiments of the Maiar (Basically second level gods)There are five of them sent to Middle-Earth to prepare the races for the re-emergance of Sauron,but forbidden to directly raise their hands against him.They are to advise only.Radaghast becomes obsessed with animal life,Gandalf with the various races,Saruman with power,and the other two go mysteriously missing after travelling with Saruman into the east.....
Or at least that's what I remember from my teens.Many many moons ago lol
iuhgluiblbjjkhkjhkljh - 1/5/2013, 5:38 AM
I think I have a man-crush...
batfan175 - 1/5/2013, 5:39 AM
Nice dream he's got there but his age does not change, since it's just a form the Maiar Olorin assumes.
INSTANTJUSTICE - 1/5/2013, 5:55 AM

The SIlmarillion is too episodic for film and in its latter half tells the story of the LOTR again in a more objective historical way which would be pointless to film again. The early part would suit a TV series not a film.

Besides the Tolkien estate own all rights to the Silmarillion and have no intention of selling them. They didn't even want Jackson to make his films but couldn't stop him since old man Tolkien sold the rights years ago.

I don't think McEvoy would be first pick.

Valandil - 1/5/2013, 6:16 AM
Fassbender in that case.
Facade - 1/5/2013, 6:27 AM
I'd love to see (parts of) The Silmarllion filmed! So many EPIC tales. A mini-series on showtime, HBO or the like would be a great avenue for featuring the richness of the book.
MrNikauL - 1/5/2013, 6:37 AM
so basically all the sequels will be preqeuls wouldn't that make them backward?
AshleyWilliams - 1/5/2013, 7:01 AM
Hmmmmmm, he plays young Patrick Stewart in one series, and a young Ian McKellen in another.
INSTANTJUSTICE - 1/5/2013, 7:01 AM
No, they'd still be prequels. Nothing can make or reinterpret them as non-prequels.

They'd only be sequels if they happened after the story in LOTR.
NeoBaggins - 1/5/2013, 7:17 AM
Fassbender is too stiff to play Gandalf. There's a certain lightheartedness about Gandalf I don't see Fassbender pulling off.
comiccow6 - 1/5/2013, 7:23 AM
So now Professor X will be Magneto? Awesome-sauce.
theomegasanction - 1/5/2013, 7:26 AM
@Amazo, i think what you described could be the foundation for a movie i would like to see. i never read beyond the Hobbit and LOTR books so i do not know how much other source material is out there. but i do believe that the longer a great movie franchise runs the more likely the next movie will be a flop. Seems that three is about the average before things get bad: Star Wars, Batman, Indiana Jones. maybe they should just call it good after the Hobbit
StephenStrange - 1/5/2013, 7:44 AM
In that case I guess it's a good thing that they will probably never make a Silmarillion movie.
Ceejay - 1/5/2013, 7:55 AM
He obviously hasn't read the Silmarillion otherwise he'd know there was never a young Gandalf and the 5 wizards never appeared until after the first age, 1000 years into the third age to be exact!
Ceejay - 1/5/2013, 8:10 AM
@INSTANTJUSTICE - Actually The Hobbit was the first book written about Middle Earth and The LOTR is pretty much the sequel to that.

Tolkien actually started it as a rewrite of The Hobbit which was going to be more serious and include more references to the timeline of Middle-Earth he had begun developing. The publishers wanted the Hobbit to stay light for children so he developed it into LOTR instead which is why they have a lot of similarities.

And for the record, the Silmarillion is not any more episodic than LOTR. For a singular book like the Hobbit, both cover a lot of timeline and a lot of events. The Hobbit only tells one perspective of those events which is why making the movie is easy to expand into three movies with all the history and other events from that timeline to present the entire account of the tale. Like wise, The Silmarillion covers an entire age of events that span the creation of the universe to the end of the first age of men, dwarfs and elves in their conflict with the first darklord Morgroth to whom Sauron was his lieutenant. It merely has to be dramatised to be made into a film just as the Hobbit had to be dramatised. It would naturally take something like 5 or 6 films to do it justice but it can be done.
superotherside - 1/5/2013, 8:23 AM
I knew it. Watch WB make these into movies as well. Since the book is so long they'll probably make it into 6 movies.
TheAmazingSpiderMan47 - 1/5/2013, 8:28 AM
The Silmarillion ... Trilogy ... make it happen !
thejfather1 - 1/5/2013, 8:30 AM
Actually everyone, he very well could play a Gandalf before the wizards leave for middle earth. He could play Gandalf/Mithrandir as a Maiar under Manwe because the wizards did not take on their human form until they left for middle earth.

In valinor however, the maiar and valar do not actually have physical forms, but they can choose to when presenting themselves to the elves among them in valinor, this is where James Mcavoy can come in
INSTANTJUSTICE - 1/5/2013, 8:37 AM
Ceejay: "Actually The Hobbit was the first book written about Middle Earth and The LOTR is pretty much the sequel to that."

To state the obvious, not in the film world, where the Hobbit has obviously been re-constructed as a prequel with its framing device etc. and any future films will function in this way and be released in this fashion.

Ceejay: "And for the record, the Silmarillion is not any more episodic than LOTR. "

The Silmarillion comprises five parts not directly connected as narratives and pretty much written like a history book rather than character driven. The second part and the largest, 'Quenta Silmarillion', is a cataloguing of events and many incidents spanning many years - not like LOTR's continuous journey of friends reaching an end-point interspersed with short flashbacks - with little dialogue, and when it is it's declarative, and tons more names.

Nontheless, it would be a far larger and more difficult task to try and turn the Sillmarillion into an engaging TV show or multiple films than either of the previous efforts with their cute Hobbits and Dwarves as the engine.

Ceejay: "It merely has to be dramatised to be made into a film just as the Hobbit had to be dramatised."

There's a big chasm of work between the two efforts and a lot more 'interpretation' involved in the Silmarillion's case.

Christuffer - 1/5/2013, 8:38 AM
Wouldn't it be funny if The Hobbit ends up being a great trilogy, so they do this one as a Trilogy too?

Irony, ba dum dum
onwardpilgrim - 1/5/2013, 8:43 AM
crap actor
legolad - 1/5/2013, 8:43 AM
They want money, so they'll make those 6 movies lol
jimpinto24 - 1/5/2013, 8:49 AM
James McAvoy is a good actor. So he would make a good Gandalf.
legolad - 1/5/2013, 8:55 AM
You know what book I would compare The Silmarillion to...


They both start out pretty similar, Eru, the One, created the world, and creates things. Then an evil being, Morgoth destroys some stuff and becomes evil. Etc...

This makes sense since Tolkien was a devout Christian and like C.S. Lewis, he put biblical themes into his novels, like good vs evil.

People always ask me how I was able to read the Silmarillion, because they say it is structured like the bible, it would take a while, but i read in a couple of weeks. Normal people say it is so boring but I like it, more than Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit. The Silmarillion is way more epic.
dancingmonkey08 - 1/5/2013, 9:02 AM
nah, James can play the younger Picard in a Star Trek sequel when they get around to doing the alternate universe version of the Next Generation

and as INSTANTJUSTICE and facade, already said, the Silmarillion could be made into a tv series. Get Peter Jackson to be the executive producer on it & direct the premiere and the finale of each season, set it in the LOTR movie universe, it could be a huge hit!
IIIAdamantiumIII - 1/5/2013, 9:38 AM
meh I had enough of Hobbits after return of the king , no desire at all to see the hobbit let alone another film with LOTR characters
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