Lois Lowry’s The Giver is one of those generation-defining books that practically everyone of a certain age read in grade school and now remembers with a fondness bordering on religion. The fable-like story of an emotionless society where citizens are incapable of seeing colors, The Giver won a Newbery Medal and has sold millions of copies worldwide. Oscar winner Jeff Bridges has been trying to adapt The Giver to the big screen without success for years now, but according to a new report in Variety, Bridges and producer Nikki Silver have reacquired the rights to the book, with an eye towards having Vadim Perelman (House of Sand and Fog) write a screenplay… with Bridges starring in the title role, an aging priest-like man who teaches the novel’s young protagonist about everything missing from their soulless society. (You know: Violence, love, sadness, joy, and everything else that defines humanity.)
Bridges’ reps wouldn’t comment on his participation in the project, but it’s interesting to speculate. With his Big Lebowski beard, Bridges certainly resembles the iconic cover photo of the Giver, and he clearly feels a strong attachment to the project — in Variety, Bridges is quoted as saying that he’d originally imagined his father Lloyd Bridges in the role, but now he feels like he’s reached the age to play the Giver. No one can doubt that Bridges is a great actor, but am I the only one who thinks he might need a bit more mileage before he plays this role? I always imagined the Giver to be an elderly wise man. At 61, Bridges still has a pretty youthful twinkle in his eye. Or maybe I just think Bridges should put a little bit more distance between The Giver and TRON: Legacy, where he played another aging mystical semi-Zen wise man.
What do you think, PopWatchers? Would you like to see Bridges play The Giver? Or do you see somebody else in the role?
Follow Darren on Twitter: @EWDarrenFranich