It's never too soon to start thinking ahead. Sure, they made a movie "about" the Browns that came out in 2014, but it was based on fiction that wasn't even originally about this franchise. However, I am convinced that in 3-4 years they will be making a film about the 2014 Cleveland Browns: the team that made an improbable run to the Super Bowl in their first year under a new coach and GM.
Not sure if the good guys win or lose the Super Bowl, my powers only show me so much, but either way it will be a season for celluloid. So, who will be cast to play the main figures in this future tale? Luckily, I've already done the work for the casting director. Which actors have I chosen to fill the shoes of our plucky heroes? Let's take a look.
Ben Kingsley is Mike Pettine
You see it, right? Yeah sure, Kingsley is a good bit older than Pettine, but this is Hollywood; did that guy that played Clark Kent in Smallville ever look like he was in high school? You might be thinking, "Ben Kingsley is a serious actor. He wouldn’t play a head coach in a sports movie."
Uh huh. Maybe that argument had validity a decade ago, but since then...hmm, let’s take a gander at his IMDb page: BloodRayne, The Love Guru, and Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time. Yeah. What were you saying, again?
Bryan Cranston is Jimmy Haslam
"Wait, so first you have 'once shook Churchill's hand' Ben Kingsley playing our late 40’s-aged head coach, and now you have the guy from Breaking Bad playing the old-ass owner of the Browns?"
First of all, why must you try to tear me down? Second, Jimmy Haslam isn’t as old as he looks. That’s just what "waiting for the other shoe to drop" does to a guy. He was born in 1954; Cranston in 1956.
Cranston just needs to dye that hair white and he would be perfect. He has the right number of wrinkles on his face (I counted), and he has that perfect, "is this gleam in my eye because I’m a jolly rich guy, or because there is a hooker buried under my vacation house and nobody will ever know" look that Jimmy pulls off so well.
Nonso Anozie is Ray Farmer
They’ve both got a certain, like, thick-but-not-fat look about them, don’t they? Like, their heads both look solid as a rock, but they also convey a certain intelligence that most "brutish" looking fellas don’t. They look like they could beat you in a game of chess, then go back to working the door at the club across the street.
Alexander Skarsgard is Joe Thomas
You think I’d have some schlub playing the great Joe Thomas? Plus, this guy is from Sweden; Joe is from Wisconsin. I guess. Wisconsin has a lot of people of Scandinavian descent. I think. They definitely have pierogies, which is probably Scandinavian.
Joe Thomas has never made his money off being a mountain of a man; he obliterates the mere mortals lined up across from him by being better at every aspect of playing football than they are. The 6'4" Swede may be a little on the lean side, but it will only further illustrate how awesome Joe is at stonewalling the rabid livestock that line up across from him on Sundays.
Tom Hardy is Donte Whitner
If you're thinking "but Tom Hardy is white," well, congrats on being stuck in the 20th century. I thought we were, like, past these divisive labels, bro. You may recognize Tom Hardy from Inception, but if you realize that he was Bane in The Dark Knight Rises, and go back and watch a movie from 2008 called Bronson, or even the film pictured above, Warrior, I think you'll agree that Hardy has to requisite intensity to play a defensive leader known for laying the wood on opposing players.
Plus, they both excel at growing those muscles that connect the shoulder to the neck; you know, the ones that look like you have a second set of little shoulders to hold your wife-beater in place? The ones that give your upper torso a palpable sense of menace.
Kevin Hart is Ben Tate
In my mind, running backs are always significantly shorter than everyone else. Plus, Tate has been great with using social media to endear himself to Cleveland fans. Sometimes you just don't need to over think it.
Terry O'Quinn/Christian Monzon as Brian Hoyer
Honestly, this casting is going to depend on how 2014 shakes out for Hoyer.
Bow Wow is Justin Gilbert
Our #1 draft pick will be played by…that guy who used to be a little kid rapper, but is now actually older than Gilbert. He’s still alive, right?
Chris Hemsworth is Jordan Cameron
Jordan Cameron is the resident hunk on the Cleveland Browns, and who better to fill his shoes than the mighty Thor? Hemsworth measures in at 6'3". Not bad for a Hollywood tight end. See? I'm trying to be sorta realistic.
Crap, I think Cameron may even be the better looking of the two. Lucky SOB.
Henry Cavill is Paul Kruger
The relatively tall and broad Cavill (Immortals and Man of Steel) makes a decent analog for the barrel-armed Paul Kruger. Just needs a little dye job. I would have included a shirtless pic of Cavill walking around all buff as Superman, but the "topless dudes" thing was starting to become a theme and that's kind of weird.
I think Kruger is going to silence all the naysayers this season and put up the kinda numbers that nobody on DBN seems to think he can. Why? Because I didn't buy that jersey for nothing, dammit.
Corbin Bleu is Joe Haden
I honestly have no idea who this is. I googled "black actors under 30" and this guy came up. I guess he’s kind of athletic looking. He and Haden both have that kind of a pretty-boy look to them (No offense, Joe. I mean, that’s a good thing, right?)
Shia LaBeouf is Johnny Manziel
My brain screams no, but my heart says yes. It's almost too perfect.
So there you have it, Browns fans. The stars of Believeland have been laid out before you. Did I miss anybody? Did I hit the nail on the head on some? Have I got too much time on my hands? What do you think?
* Note: Josh Gordon does not appear on the list above, as this film will be about the 2014 Browns, not 2015.