Angelina Jolie cast as Maria Callas in Pablo Larrain’s ‘Maria’: omg or oh no??

For a while, it seemed like Angelina Jolie was giving up acting to focus on her family, her directing career and her humanitarian interests. At the end of the day, she needed money though – as we now know, for much of the past fourteen years, her money was tied up in the Chateau Miraval. So she needed paying gigs, and she wanted movies where she could shoot stuff very fast, usually on her kids’ school breaks. A supporting role in The Eternals, voice work in some animated films, a quick film shoot for Those Who Wish Me Dead. She hasn’t had a major lead role in a major movie since (arguably) Maleficent: Mistress of Evil, and it’s not like that was an Oscar-bait drama. I did wonder if we’d ever see Jolie like that again. Well, guess what? She’s going to play Maria Callas in a Pablo Larrain movie!

Jackie and Spencer director Pablo Larraín looks set to continue to focus his lens on some of the most famous women in modern history, and has found his next subject in soprano Maria Callas. The Chilean director has also tapped another, equally well-known, figure to play his lead in Angelina Jolie.

Maria, based on true accounts, will reportedly tell the “tumultuous, beautiful and tragic story” of the life of the one of the world’s greatest opera singer, relived and reimagined during her final days in 1970s Paris. The hugely-influential American-born Greek icon — once described as “the Bible of opera” by Leonard Bernstein — is also linked to another of Larraín’s films, having famously had a love affair with Greek shipping tycoon Aristotle Onassis, who later married Jackie Kennedy.

Written by Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight, who reunites with Larraín following the director’s previous feature, Spencer, the film is produced by Juan de Dios Larraín for Fabula Pictures; Lorenzo Mieli for The Apartment Pictures, a Fremantle Company; and Jonas Dornbach for Komlizen Film.

“I take very seriously the responsibility to Maria’s life and legacy. I will give all I can to meet the challenge,” said Jolie. “Pablo Larraín is a director I have long admired. To be allowed the chance to tell more of Maria’s story with him, and with a script by Steven Knight, is a dream.”

Added Larraín: “Having the chance to combine my two most deep and personal passions, cinema and opera, has been a long-awaited dream. To do this with Angelina, a supremely brave and curious artist, is a fascinating opportunity. A true gift.”

[From THR]

It would have been amazing to see a Greek or Greek-American play one of the most iconic Greek women of all time, but I also think this is good casting. Maria Callas was beautiful and tragic, deeply in love with Ari Onassis, a man who treated her like garbage. Looking at photos of Callas when she was young, I actually do see a resemblance with Jolie? Especially around the eyes and mouth. I doubt Larrain will make Jolie sing. They’ll use Callas’s recordings, surely? Anyway, I enjoyed Jackie and Spencer and I’m interested and excited to see what Larrain does here, with Jolie. I wonder who they’ll get to play Onassis? Let me dream-cast this… how about Eric Bana?? OMG, Mark Ruffalo??? Joel Edgerton could pull it off, in a weird way.

Photos courtesy of Backgrid, Starstock/Photoshot/Avalon and Avalon Red.

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108 Responses to “Angelina Jolie cast as Maria Callas in Pablo Larrain’s ‘Maria’: omg or oh no??”

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  1. Bettyrose says:

    Seems like good casting. It will generate interest in the subject matter. And it’ll be nice to see AJ in a biopic drama rather than Disney or action flick.

  2. Kebbie says:

    I love this for her. I’m excited to see her show off her acting chops again, it’s been too long.

  3. Kassia says:

    You had me at 1970s Paris

  4. Seraphina says:

    I think it’s good casting too and happy to see her try this role. I’m just worried about the accent – it was the greatest when she played Alexander the Great’s mother.
    Was trying to figure out which Greek actress or Greek-American actress could play her but I’m drawing a blank without much time to think.
    Can’t wait for this one.

    • dlc says:

      I’m a little worried about Alexander Part 2. Hopefully the director will help coax a good performance out of her.

    • BeanieBean says:

      Well, she’s not Greek, but I was thinking Idina Menzel could play Callas. But if they’re not concerned with getting a singer, I guess it wouldn’t matter.

    • Lou says:

      Melissanthi Mahut is a good match.

      • Lizzie says:

        Agree 100%. She was hilarious in Fire Saga and heartbreaking in Sandman. And she looks eerily like Callas in some ways (those eyebrows 🙂

        Jolie will give it her all, but Larrain is hit or miss for me. Liked Jackie, but couldn’t get through Spencer. I’m excited but also dreading a trainwreck. Callas deserves a biopic though, so here’s hoping.

      • Josephine says:

        Maybe a little young? I guess it depends on what part of her life they’re focusing on, but Melissanthi is quite a bit younger. Plus you know he wants the name recognition for this movie. They always do.

      • Nathalie says:

        I’m currently playing Assassin’s Creed Odyssey and while voice acting is obviously not the same, her work as Kassandra is one of the best portrayals. She’s got so much emotion, it touches you.

    • Emma33 says:

      Jennifer Anniston!!

    • The Old Chick says:

      Or Greek actresses from other countries like Australia? Australia has an enormous Greek population and quite a few actresses (and they’re less likely to have had plastic surgery to change their look) and can often do a us accent too.

    • Big Bertha says:

      Marina Sirtis 20 years ago would have been perfect. But my pick is definitely Natasia Demetriou. Fangs included.

  5. line says:

    I liked his biopic on Jackie but I hated Spencer or he totally missed the point and Kirsten Stewart’s performance had nothing to do with Diana. For this Maria Callas biopic, ‘Angelina Jolie no, Maria Callas with a very typical Mediterranean Greek physique, Onassis too.Why is it hard for Hollywood to find actors with the right race ethnicities. There must be a hundred Greek-American or Greek actresses who might be a better fit to play Callas than Jolie.

    • Bettyrose says:

      ITA, and if it were going to be a streaming series, say on Apple+ or Showtime, there’d be time to win over an audience on the sheer strength of the show, but for a theatrical release film that only has two hours to tell a story, a big name is what will get viewers. And more views means more people who now know this woman’s story. AJ will be respectful of the subject matter and sensitive to the cultural angle.

      • Seraphina says:

        @Bettyrose, I agree with what you said here. Plus, AJ can bring out the passion in Maria Callas which a strong actress needs to bring to the screen.

      • line says:

        Yeah ! It is because of this reason that there are not many
        of diversity on the big screen because most of the big names in Hollywood are white. Pablo Larrain is an established director now, so he can to cast lesser-known actors in leading roles for his movies. Unlike the 80s and 90s, the public does not watch a movie just because of a famous actor, Amsterdam despite a prestigious cast has been a flop.

      • Bettyrose says:

        @Line – ITA with all of that, except that citing an A List movie that flopped doesn’t support the argument that a lesser known name will be successful. If it were up to me, this would be a series taking risks on lesser known actors. I live for a good dramatic series to curl up with. But I’m also looking forward to seeing AJ in a dramatic role for the first time in awhile.

      • Lurker25 says:

        @bettyrose, to support the argument of casting a lesser known name to lead a film that goes on to be successful –
        Austin Butler was unknown, cast as the lead, and then a gigantic promotional frenzy around his performance ensured that we knew who he was, a million magazine covers, reviews, gossip mag placements later.
        Replace “Austin Butler” with “Greek actress” and you think it wouldn’t be the same result, especially if she were speaking Greek and could pull off the singing? What if she was from the same village as Callas or had a 4th cousin in common? There could be 1000 more angles to the press coverage than “Angelina jolie is in X new film”…
        The Elvis analogy holds true on every count, even shows how shallow the argument really is, given the variety of press angles … Except, you know, Austin is a blonde American kid and a Greek actress is still “ethnic”…

      • Bettyrose says:

        Lurker – That’s a great point, but Elvis was also a movie about someone very famous. Maria Callas is significantly less well known and might not attract the same level of viewership. If the director’s goal is to introduce Callas to those who were previously unfamiliar, casting AJ is a brilliant move.

      • Josephine says:

        @ Lurker25 – With respect, Austin Butler was not an unknown. He was hugely popular among teen/early 20 girls, who were probably a big part of the crowd they were trying to draw in. And Elvis is a different story than Maria Callas. I’m not convinced that Angelina is the best casting but she was terrific as Gia Carangi so I hope we get that level of performance again.

    • panthress says:

      To Line, I totally agree with your statement and that is particularly true concerning Kristin Stewart. Actress Melina Kanakaredes is of Greek descent, looks like Callas, and is an excellent actress. Melina would nail the part of Callas. Google her and you will see her resume. Jolie is questionable as Callas.

      • BeanieBean says:

        Just googled! She’d be great, but it looks like Hollywood is doing what Hollywood always has done, going with the big name recognition.

      • Josephine says:

        Yes, she would have been a very interesting choice although a bit older. And I think she would have done the role justice.

  6. Amy Bee says:

    I think she can pull it off.

    • Lady D says:

      Hey, if Natalie Portman can become a world class ballerina in eight months, I’m sure Angelina will play a soprano perfectly.
      All kidding aside, I wonder if she will do any singing in this movie?

      • BeanieBean says:

        And apparently Renee Zellweger was able to pull off a convincing Judy Garland, so who knows?

  7. Roxy says:

    I just hope that they don’t put prosthetics on her or if they do it has to be subtle and tasteful. Not a gross caricature that makes Maria Callas big beautiful nose seem unsightly

    • Lola says:

      Ugh, such a wrong fucking choice on so many levels. I happen to be a Maria Callas super fan. Here’s why this was so wrong.

      Remember the late 90s when the only beauty standard allowable was anorexically thin, tall white blondes? And everyone else was dirt and garbage? Take that and multiply it by 100 when you go back to the 1950s.

      Maria Callas was the exact opposite of the beauty standard. At that time in the USA Greeks were not considered “really” white. The only thing considered beautiful was to have blonde hair, tiny blue eyes, a tiny snub nose, and tiny cute lips. Maria had huge features. She was brown. She took up space. She was loud. And she had a gigantic ego. She was the best and she knew it and she was not shy about it at all. She never shied away from saying she was the best, and unlike Kanye, it was true in her case.

      She was more than just talented, she was also a genius. And she was also the hardest working person in any scenario she was in.

      Her behavior was also the polar opposite of what was allowed to women in the 1950s. She constantly talked down to and condescended to men in positions of wealth and power in the art world because she was better, smarter, more knowledgeable, and more talented than them and everyone knew it.

      She clashed with the director of the Metropolitan Opera who fired her because in his words, he had to decide if Maria Callas was running the Met or if he was running the Met, and he decided it should be him.

      She had left her much older husband for financially exploiting and controlling her, and shacked up with a billionaire. This was not okay in the 1950s. She did not have children. She faced the most smarmy, misogynistic, and degrading interview questions from the sleazy male talk show hosts of the time and put them all in their place. Look up some of those interviews on youtube, it’s shocking how they were allowed to treat her and the awful things they were allowed to say to her.

      Many men of the 1950s did their best to demean her and try to take her down because they could not handle the fact that a brown woman who was a genius, brilliant, beautiful, and better than them, had absolutely no intentions of staying in her lane, or pretending that any of them were better than her, or sparing any of their egos whatsoever.

      She was the first gay icon of the media age for a reason.

      • Mf says:

        As a Callas fan: yes, this spot on. Also, Jolie doesn’t look a lot like her—and her looks (both her beauty and her ethnicity) are a big part of her story, so that really matters.

      • BeanieBean says:

        Spot on! My mom was a huge Callas fan, like yourself. Have we never seen someone attempt a biopic of Maria Callas before? Some of what you’ve described may be why–she really rattled the establishment.

      • Gubbinal says:

        Absolutely! Thank you so much.

      • TikiChica says:

        She was not brown. And if “she took up space” is a euphemism for “she was a larger woman”, then I will say in her younger days she was ridiculously tiny. In fact, there is a picture here of her together with Marilyn, who is wearing the famous naked dress, and you can see she is even tinier than MM

      • lucy2 says:

        Interesting! I know very little of her, good to hear a fan’s perspective.
        I don’t care for Angelina as an actress, so I’ll probably skip this.

      • Lola says:

        tikichica, a woman “taking up space” does not necessarily mean she is a “larger woman,” good grief. There are a lot of ways to take up space. Not all of them are physical. And if a person wants to take up physical space, a certain body weight is not required. Also, if you’re curious, Callas was heavier when she was *younger* and lesser-known. Her weight loss was a topic that nobody let drop for the rest of her life.

    • Maria says:

      Agree to avoiding prosthetics! Either you can act it or not. I hated the prosthetics in Nicole Kidman when playing Virginia Woolf. It is not the nose that defines these great women, but their Persona.

  8. AustenGirl1975 says:

    “It would have been amazing to see a Greek or Greek-American play one of the most iconic Greek women of all time, but I also think this is good casting.”

    I must be feeling ornery this morning because the first name that popped into my head as I read this sentence is Jennifer Anniston. But, I giggled, not cackled, as I thought it.

    I’m so excited about Angelina’s casting in this! Years ago, I saw Faye Dunaway play Maria Callas in a play called “Masterclass” without knowing anything about Maria before I went. It was also my first exposure to live opera, and I was surprised how the music moved me to tears.

    I love this for Angelina because every time she is really seen–as a talented and valuable professional in her industry, as a globally respected humanitarian, as a loving and protective mother–her light shines ever more brightly, which naturally casts an inescapable spotlight on Brad, revealing how depraved and despicable he really is. Now that we all know what he put her through, everything thing she does is the act of a triumphant survivor.

    • Bettyrose says:

      OMG thank you for that. I forgot that she’s Greek. Her breakout role on Friends cast her as Jewish and played it up with constant references to her nose job. The 90s were a different time but she can actually play her own ethnicity authentically. I don’t think anyone sees her as a serious dramatic actor though. She’s great on the Morning Show but that’s a bit more soapy style drama.

    • Carrotface says:

      Oh I also saw Masterclass on broadway when I was in high school, but the role of Maria was played by Dixie Carter (?!) when I saw it. I’m on the fence about Angelina’s casting – I think she can do the passion and tumult of Maria’s life well, but I think she may be too conventionally beautiful and I’ll be grumpy if they just give her a fake nose or something.

  9. Jo says:

    This would be a great opportunity to propel an unknown actress of Greek descent into stardom (regardless of what you think of Blonde, it did put de Armas in the limelight). Larraín seems to like actresses who aren’t great, but who have a huge persona and are often in the press because of their personal life. Which is strange because it superimposes an old iconic woman to another contemporary notorious woman. When watching Jackie or Spencer, you cannot forget the actresses which is directly opposed to shedding light on an icon and turning them more tangible. I was never able to watch Jolie acting and forget it was her.

  10. C-Shell says:

    A few years ago, I got to see the holographic concert of Maria Callas, and it was AWESOME. I think Jolie is a good choice — the resemblance is strong, but, even more, she has the physical bearing to portray Callas’ regal posture and movement. I can’t WAIT for this!

  11. Julia K says:

    Nia Vardalos? Greek parents and good actress.

    • K8erade says:

      She was the only Greek-American actress I could think of off the top of my head. I’ve never seen her in anything dramatic. Does she have dramatic acting skill?

      • Lens says:

        Any comedic actor has dramatic acting ability because it’s way easier. I thought of Nia and also Rita Wilson who sings as well although not opera.

    • Lola says:

      The actress playing Callas should be Greek or another woman of color (Greeks were not treated as “white” in the US of the time), but just because a woman is Greek does not mean she can play Callas or is anything like her. Nia Vardalos could not do Callas. Her whole shtick is having no confidence or self-esteem. Callas was the best and she knew it and let everyone else around her know it too. She had zero intention of staying in her lane or puffing up the egos of the 1950s men surrounding her. That’s why they all wanted to take her down.

      • Seraphina says:

        @Lola, agreed with all you said. I don’t think there is an actress with AJ’s quality that is Greek-American. And a Greek actress from Greece will not have the name power to pull viewers. AJ can carry being MC – MC had a feminine power that radiated from within and AJ has that.

      • sara says:

        Greeks are not people of color. Stop that nonsense.

      • Lola says:

        At that time, which was the 1950s, Greeks, Turks, Arabs, Southern Italians, and various North African people were all considered to be the same “type,” which was “dark white.” The man who first invented the notion of 4 distinct races classified this group, the “dark white Mediterranean race,” together with Somalis, Ethiopians, Sudanese, and Indian Brahmins.

        He called this group Melanochroi, and stated that it was “absurd” for them to be classified together with Nordic people (Xanthochroi) as Caucasians.

        From the start, and until very, very recently, Greeks were classified as people of color under this artifical, invented, unscientific system.

      • Ange says:

        Just because the fifties subscribed to such prescriptive, racist nonsense doesn’t mean we have to now for ‘authenticity’. Calling Greek people POC these days is entirely weird and othering.

      • Lola says:

        If a person is treated as a racial/ethnic other in the time and place of their existence, and that shaped every experience they had in life, and we want to do a biopic about them, we most certainly do need to treat that “authentically.”

      • AlpineWitch says:

        Sara, in the UK I’m considered a ‘white – other’ as an Italian (these ethnic forms are included everywhere, including job contracts), so while we’re not part of the BAME ethnicities, we cannot indicate we’re White British on forms.

        Once I did on a form and the lady recruiting told me off as I thought ‘British’ was meant as a nationality and not an ethnicity.

      • Josephine says:

        @ sara – growing up in the 1960s and 70s, I can assure you that Greeks were considered “other”, not white, a lot like Italians. I lived in a metro area with a lot of Greek and Italians, and as Italians in the 1980s, we were told that we were “lucky” that we were allowed to move into our suburban neighborhood. Greeks were treated much the same way.

  12. K8erade says:

    Now this is something I’m excited for! I love Maria Callas. I started listening to her music in college. I can’t really think of any Greek or Greek-American actresses today that could embody Maria so I’m fine with Angelina Jolie especially as she already bears a striking resemblance to Maria already.

    • Eurydice says:

      Tonia Sotiropoulou would have the right look (and the right nose). There’s also Vicki Papadopoulou, who is a better actor. But, in general, what annoys me about the “marketing” and “lack of talent” arguments is that they’re dismissed when used for other ethnic and cultural groups, but it always seems to be ok to have non-Greeks play Greeks. I always cringe at the accents and attempts to pronounce Greek.

      • Seraphina says:

        I agree they would have been a better “look wise” and of course the ladies are Greek. I agree with BettyRose that they need star power and a heavy hitter. AJ has that. Greek accents are not easy to replicate – it is very distinct to the trained ear.

      • K8erade says:

        I do agree regarding Tonia Sotiropoulou nailing the look (I had to look her up and she really does look like Maria). I don’t know enough about her acting to say otherwise. I hope she was considered and there was a valid reason they chose Ang over Tonia. Still, Angelina has a je ne sais quois that just makes her really the perfect embodiment of Maria Callas. Neither Angie or Maria have ever stayed in their lanes and I think Angie can connect to Maria in that common way. I also think Angie can embody the confidence of Maria Callas better than someone like Vicki Papadopoulou.

  13. Genevieve says:

    It could be good. But my first thought is that Jolie’s energy is too cool to play someone like Callas, who was like a tiger onstage. But I think she’s played some intense characters in the past? I haven’t really seen enough of her work to know for sure.

    • SophieJara says:

      I’m not someone who thinks of her as a particularly great actress, but in high school me and all the baby queers were obsessed with her early rolls, which had a lot of fire (like Foxfire and Gia).

    • Lizzie Bathory says:

      I don’t remember Foxfire very well, but as SophieJara says, Angie was very intense in Gia. There’s a scene at the end of a photo shoot where she flings herself at a chain link fence–she’s like a wild animal.

  14. BW says:

    Good casting. Jolie looks a quite a bit like Callas. Maria Callas was a New Yorker from birth, so it’s not like Jolie has to do an accent. Yes, her parents were Greek, but Callas was American.

    • Eurydice says:

      Maria Callas had a Greek accent when speaking English and an American accent when speaking Greek. She was born in the US and then moved to Greece when she was in her early teens. She was a US citizen until she renounced it and became a Greek citizen. Both countries can claim her, but she was more complex than that.

      • Nem says:

        This is so surprising, as she was speaking a perfect french with elaborate, complex words in specific music terms with ease.
        She was an incredibly gifted person

      • Debbie says:

        Well, opera singers do have to learn how to speak French, Italian, etc. in order to sing opera in those languages.

    • Seraphina says:

      A person of Greek parents born in the US is considered Greek by the Greeks back home and may claim dual citizenship. In fact, their children can as well – even if their other parent is of non-Greek linage.

    • Lola says:

      No, Angelina Jolie certainly will have to do not only one but several accents to play Callas. Callas never used her authentic American accent in public, it is only heard on candid tape recordings of her, but even that is a Queens accent just like Donald Trump which Jolie does not naturally have. Instead she used several different accents in interviews depending on her purpose for doing so. She would sometimes use a Greek or Italian accent in English, deliberately as this was part of the image she was creating in the media. If she wasn’t doing that, she was doing a Mid-Atlantic accent a la Katherine Hepburn. Sometimes an RP British accent. And that’s just English. She was also fluent in French, Italian, and Greek, all of which she spoke with an excellent accent. And she spent much more time speaking those languages than English since she primarily lived in countries where they were spoken.

  15. Cessily says:

    I’m actually excited for this, I never knew much about Maria until I spent time in Sirmione Italy on Lake Garda. I am really looking forward to seeing this movie.

  16. TheOriginalMia says:

    I’m excited for her. I think she’ll be able to merge the glamour and tragedy of Callas beautifully.

    Also, she is here in Atlanta for Spelman’s homecoming. People have been posting candid photos of her and she is luminous. Even walking around at the cookout!

    • Mireille says:

      Did you see that photo of her and Zahara posing with the Stacey Abrams for Governor sign? Loves it. LOVES HER. And I love her for doing this role.

    • Paulkid says:

      I have all sorts of good wishes for Jolie, but when Genevieve wrote that Callas was a tiger on stage, I immediately thought of Lady Gaga. She isn’t Greek, but she has fire!

      • BeanieBean says:

        OMG, Lady Gaga!!! Why did no one think of her??

      • HandforthParish says:

        Gaga definitely has the physicality. I fear Jolie is too well-known to blend into the character.
        Will it be like Nicole Kidman her fake Virginia Woolfe nose?

      • Sudie says:

        Lady Gaga was my first thought too as she actually looked the part in House of Gucci and she can sing. But, I love Angelina and I trust that she can deliver and will remind everyone that she is a great dramatic actress. I didn’t care for Spencer or Jackie, but I’m looking forward to the story of Maria Callas.

      • Sue E Generis says:

        Ooo, now THAT sounds like it would have been excellent casting.

      • Christine says:

        This would have been amazing casting!

      • MsGnomer says:

        I, too, thought of Gaga!!!! She would be so perfect…..

        Maybe recent events may have changed AJ so that she will be able to give a better range of performance than she has in the past. Wishing AJ and children well and look forward to this biopic.

      • The Old Chick says:

        Gaga could do the energy of Callas and the look, for sure! Obviously her voice is nothing like Callas, and no actress could pull off her amazing soprano, so presumably they’ll use her own recordings? Love the gaga idea.

  17. Karisma says:

    I’m excited for this! Happy to see her working with a respected director on an Oscar bait type of movie again. She said she lost her interest for acting when her mother died and honestly people are often underestimating her in this era because her celebrity aura is so big even though she won a GG, Oscar etc she’s gonna remind to everyone why she’s one of the greats. Can’t wait

  18. Lola says:

    If anyone is unfamiliar with Callas but wants a taste, here is the trailer for a recent documentary on her: www . sonyclassics . com / mariabycallas

    The documentary is also on Amazon prime as a 3.99 rental if you want to see the whole thing.

    The trailer also happens to show several of the accents she used in English (purposely) at different times … the Greek accent she uses (ironically) while speaking about being born in NY, the Mid-Atlantic accent, then right after that there’s candid footage in black and white of her using her real Queens accent while venting about how the director of the Met tried to force her to do “lousy performances” that she didn’t want to do. (And the Met director himself appears shortly after that talking about how she was “not fired, she was SEVERED.”)

    • Ivy says:

      I highly recommend this documentary as well! The book “The Woman behind the Legend” was a great read as well. Her complexity is one of my favorite things about her.

    • BeanieBean says:

      Thank you for that! I will definitely watch that documentary & read the book mentioned by Ivy. I am now a Maria Callas fan!! That voice! That bearing! That attitude!

  19. Dee says:

    Javier Bardem as Ari??

    • BeanieBean says:

      I was going to suggest Al Pacino, but he may be a little old now. Still, he’s becoming gnomelike as he ages (but OMG was he beautiful when he was young!) & Ari was definitely a little gnome of a guy.

    • TeamMeg says:

      Bardem would be hot!

  20. Ivy says:

    You know what, I don’t hate this! She doesn’t look like Maria but I think she will have no problem capturing Maria’s essence. Two very controversial figures with their own scandalous past, I am intrigued to see how she plays it.

  21. Make up, costume, prosthetics, and padding can change her to the physical requirements to resemble Callas. A dialect coach can help on the accents required. But can she sing?

  22. Lizzie Bathory says:

    I’m intrigued. I thought Spencer was good & I did like Kristen Stewart’s performance. That said, my favorite part of the film was the chef running his brigade in the kitchen at Sandringham. I’d love an Upstairs/Downstairs sort of treatment of the kitchens feeding the British royals!

  23. nikomikael says:

    Eh, not the right casting. Its crazy to see people bending over backwards to justify not casting greek born actress, just because its Angelina Jolie. If they needed starpower like some here commented they could have just casted bigger names for other roles.

    • sara says:

      Do you know what acting is? why does her being greek matter? they are both white people at the end of the day. this is not like a white person playing a black person.

      • Lola says:

        Because not being considered “really” white, which was very much the case for her in the 1950s, was central to everything that happened to her as she demanded her rightful respect as a supremely talented person and genius in the most exclusionary, snobbish, male dominated European art form of the time.

      • Karisma says:

        @Sara Thank you!
        Kristen Stewart was an American playing a British I didn’t see people make a fuss out of it, same with Adam driver who is currently playing Enzo Ferrari an Italian man.

      • Ange says:

        Especially since Callas was truly international, born in America but moved all over. Her not being considered ‘white’ is not something that can be replicated now except for acting, so they need someone up to the task of capturing that.

  24. Lola says:

    Maybe an odd take, and they look nothing alike, but I’d actually love to see Barbra Streisand play Callas if she were 25 years younger.

  25. HeyKay says:

    Maria was one of the Opera Superstars when the world was smaller, she was internationally a leading talent. I’d watch a film about her but not AJ as her. No matter what, I’d still be thinking
    I think they should cast a Greek actress. Some wonderful actress could have this role explode her career. And honestly, HW needs some new faces/talent, IMO.

    The entire story of Maria, Ari, Jackie, Ari’s children and 1 grandchild all reads as nothing but overwhelming heartbreak to me.
    So much money, heartbreak, drama, drugs, PR, divorce, death and tragedy in one family.
    Even the grandchild, can’t recall her name, seems an unhappy woman.

    Between the Kennedy family and Aris’ family it’s generations of tragedy.
    And so damn much money they could give to charity for overall good.
    Wealth hoarding is vile.

  26. KLO says:

    if so, this will be the first Jolie film I will watch since I saw the weird “Tourist”. I effing love Pablo Larrain his work is magic to me.

  27. Lo says:

    I don’t think this is the best idea. Unpopular opinion here but widely accepted elsewhere Angelina Jolie can be an uneven actress. She isn’t a famous character actress. Maria Callas is still ranked as one of the most famous opera singers in polls. Most people don’t know any living opera singers they can only name her and Pavorotti. I saw a poll a couple of years ago and she was one of the top female singers. I would have auditioned famous and unknown. Catherine Zeta Jones wanted to play her. I don’t see that either. Natalie Portman took ballet from childhood till teens of course she didn’t do all the dancing. She won Oscar for the acting. I’m not concerned about the lip syncing just the acting. This would be a great role for some one I just don’t know if it’s her.

  28. Heather says:

    Oscar Isaac for Ari?

  29. A says:

    I’m excited for this. I know people might disagree with me, but I feel like the reason Angelina got cast, and fits the role, is more to do with the fact that she is a very similar figure to Maria Callas in a lot of ways, especially in the manner she occupied her space in the public eye. She fits the role in a certain way, so I get it. They are both women who were maligned by public opinion, often unfairly, especially by the men in their lives who sought to abuse and control them for their own purposes. That’s Angelina’s story as much as it is Maria Callas’ story. I get the feeling she’s going to be really good in this role.

  30. sunny says:

    I think this is really interesting casting. I think the public has generally forgotten what a fantastic actress she is so i am glad she is taking on this complicated role.

    I liked Spenser and Jackie and Lorrains’ whole thing is the actress doesn’t need a huge physical resemblance to the subject as he is much more interested in the emotional sense he is trying to convey.

  31. CTgirl says:


  32. Serena says:

    In the 80s-90s Angelica Huston would’ve made a great Callas. With Jack Nicholson as Ari Onassis.

    Fun fact (for me, anyway): Callas went to the same elementary school I attended!