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After many rumors in the media, it has finally been confirmed that Gary Oldman will play George Smiley in the cinematic adaptation of the John le Carre novel Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.
To those who don’t know about the work of John le Carre, he is spy novelist who has written novels The Spy Who Came in from the Cold and The Constant Gardener. His work has been adapted and his known for taking a more realistic, understated view on the world of espionage -- a polar opposite to James Bond.
Many literary critics consider Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy as one of le Carre’s best novels. The basic plot is MI6 has received intelligence that there is a Soviet mole within the organization and Smiley is part of the team to find him as well as being on the list of suspects. The novel was adapted by the BBC in 1979 as a mini-series with Alec Guinness as Smiley.
George Smiley is le Carre’s best know character, a senior officer in MI6 (or "the Circus" in the novels) who is involved in the middle of the Cold War. Oldman has an extensive filmography, from Batman and Harry Potter to Hannibal and JFK. He has shown that he is one of the most talented actors around and it would be great to see the main good guy for a change. But he will need to change his appearance to play a frog-looking, overweight intelligence officer.
Tinker, Tailor, Soilder, Spy is setting itself up as a prestige picture: Working Title Films (Frost/Nixon, Green Zone), is producing the film. The project has attracted an experience cast including Colin Firth, Mark Strong and Tom Hardy. Bridget O’Conner and Peter Straughan (The Men Who Stare at Goats) have written the screenplay with Swedish director Tomas Alfredson (Let the Right One In) helming the film. Alfredson is an experienced director and he will be able to make a subtle thriller.
A fan of espionage fiction I am eagerly awaiting this film.