Hank Azaria, Paul Ben-Victor, ...
Credit: Azaria: Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic; Giamatti: Gary Miller/FilmMagic; Ben-Victor: Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic


When Peter and Bobby Farrelly first explored the idea of a Three Stooges movie, they courted Sean Penn, Jim Carrey, and Benicio Del Toro to play Larry, Curly, and Moe. Now, the long-delayed project — which was pushed back in light of MGM’s monetary problems — has an entirely different cast: MadTV‘s Will Sasso as Curly, and, as announced last night, Will & Grace‘s Sean Hayes as Larry. It’s a tad surprising that the Farrellys would cast TV stars in a film that was intended to be an A-list affair. But! There’s still one more role to cast: Moe. So here’s the question: Should the Farrellys continue their TV trend, or should they shoot for a marquee movie star name?

As much as I’d love to see someone unexpected like, say, Paul Giamatti or Robert Downey, Jr. play the role, the film would be best suited with an actor who wouldn’t grab attention away from his co-stars. After all, this is the Three Stooges we’re talking about, not One Oscar-Nominated Stooge and Two TV Dudes. So I’m still going to champion Hank Azaria for the role: Like the rest of the cast, the actor has enjoyed a stellar TV career, but still has enough of a reputation on film to give the Three Stooges reboot the cred it needs. Also, if I wasn’t so wary of the aforementioned attention-grabbing, I’d be curious to see how Charlie Sheen would fare. If we’ve learned anything from the last few months, it’s that he can play grumpy buffoon rather well. Another actor who would be on my shortlist: Paul Ben-Victor, the man who played Moe in 2000’s Three Stooges TV movie. Hey, he already knows the material!

What do you think, PopWatchers? Should the Farrellys recruit another TV actor? Or should they shoot for the stars?

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