BEVERLY HILLS, California — In Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic 1886 novella “Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde,” Dr. Henry Jekyll is a man of great mystery. Keeping even his closest allies in the dark about his intentions, he lets loose as Mr. Hyde and explores the moral complexities of mankind in a memorable, horrific way. In many ways, the same can be said of the soon-to-shoot [artist id=”860639″]50 Cent[/artist]/ [movieperson id=”103255″]Forest Whitaker[/movieperson] collaboration “Jekyll and Hyde.”
“Yeah, they just turned in a new draft,” Oscar-winner Whitaker explained when MTV News caught up with him over the weekend, providing some rare insight into the production that Fif has been so secretive about . “It’s based on the book really strongly.”
But, according to the “Last King of Scotland” actor, his involvement may not be as sure a thing as his co-star has made it sound. “We’re still figuring out what we’re going to do, if I am going to be doing that or not,” Whitaker said. “If I end up doing it, I would be playing Jekyll and he would be playing Hyde.”
For those who haven’t been keeping up on their 19th-century Scottish literature, Stevenson’s tale (and its numerous re-interpretations) concerns a dual-title character battling with his own internal sense of right and wrong. After drinking a potion that he creates, a younger, crueler, remorseless version of Dr. Jekyll — known as Mr. Hyde — emerges and begins engaging in everything from prostitution to burglary and murder.
“It’s a father-son kind of relationship,” Whitaker said of how he and 50 Cent plan to go back to the source material in the film. “It’s also [an interesting script] because we are dealing with similar things. You know, this Jekyll has a lot of issues and problems personally, himself. Hidden passions, hidden perversions — and it’s acted out by 50.”
“Abel Ferrara direct[s] it,” Whitaker said of the revered filmmaker behind the original “Bad Lieutenant” movie. “It would be very classic.
“It will be interesting to play Jekyll,” added Whitaker, who can be seen (or, more accurately, heard) in next week’s “Where the Wild Things Are.” “I think he’s interesting.”
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