British actor Tom Hardy, who recently portrayed the brutishly demented Heathcliff in the BBC/PBS production of Wuthering Heights, has aspirations of classic romantic icon grandeur. Despite his best known performances as bad boy thugs, gangsters and bullies he would actually prefer to play classic archetypes such as The Oresteia, Romulus and Remus, Iago and Othello, Tamburlaine the Great – and Pride and Prejudice’s Mr. Darcy. Yes, Mr. Darcy! In a recent interview for the Telegram.co.uk, he revealed his first failed attempt to convince movie producers that he had the Darcy noble mien.
In fact, Hardy says he very nearly won the part of Darcy in Joe Wright’s 2005 film of Pride and Prejudice, where Matthew MacFadyen in the end played opposite Keira Knightley. And he was gutted when the very powerful Stacey Snider, ex-head of Universal Pictures, now CEO of Steven Spielberg’s company Dreamworks, told him: “Babe, every woman in the world has an impression of who Darcy is and you’re just not it.”
“That hurt, that really hurt,” Hardy recalls now. “I’d worn a blue shirt and jeans and a blue blazer and been doing my best Hugh Grant impression. But now I was back to playing the wonky skewiff-teeth kid with the bow legs.”
Even though the “blue coat” worked for Mr. Bingley as an enticement to the Bennet sisters in Pride and Prejudice, don’t you know that you just can’t make a silk purse out of sow’s ear Mr. Hardy? We admire you in those nasty boy roles. Stick to what you do best and leave by your dreams of Darcy!
Cheers, Laurel Ann, Austenprose