MGM and Paramount’s upcoming Timur Bekmambetov-directed remake of Ben-Hur may have found a leading man in star Tom Hiddleston. Deadline reports that the The Avengers actor is being eyed for the part of Judah Ben-Hur, played in the 1959 William Wyler version by Charlton Heston.
Set for release on February 26, 2016, the new take on Ben-Hur was originally scripted by Keith Clarke (The Way Back, with revisions by Academy Award-winner John Ridley (12 Years a Slave). It is based on Lew Wallace’s 1880 epic novel “Ben-Hur: A Tale of The Christ.”
The film is said to return to the heart of the epic novel with a focus on the nature of faith. The story follows a falsely-accused nobleman who survives years of slavery to take vengeance on his best friend who betrayed him. Both must come to choose between retribution or forgiveness.
Hiddleston appeared earlier this year opposite Tilda Swinton and Mia Wasikowska in Jim Jarmusch’s Only Lovers Left Alive. He can next be seen reteaming with Wasikowska (as well as Jessica Chastain, and Charlie Hunnam) for Guillermo del Toro’s Crimson Peak.
Producers include Mark Burnett, Sean Daniel and Joni Levin with Jason F. Brown, Keith Clarke, Roma Downey and John Ridley serving as executive producer.