Over a year ago it was reported Vince Vaughn would take up the mantle of James Garner’s 1970s anti-hero, Jim Rockford.
The movie has stagnated in production since the Washington Post’s April 2012 blog post, and with that, you can expect that Jim Rockford and company will probably not be coming to the big screen any time soon.
I do think Vince Vaughn could portray Rockford in a decent light, but some of the other names kicked around. Josh Holloway is one, and Dermot Mulroney played the role in a TV movie. Both are meh.
Regardless, I thought I would offer up my five actors who could portray the ex-con-turned-detective in a screen adaptation. The following must have that self-deprecating, sarcastic ladies man who knows how to drive a car and have a steel jaw.
||Who: Julian McMahon
From: Fantastic Four, Red and “Nip/Tuck”
Why: Jim Rockford can be a prick sometimes, and who else to shed light on that aspect than the egotistical plastic surgeon from “Nip/Tuck”. McMahon has also played baddies in Red and Fantastic Four, so being an ex-con might be a good fit for him.
||Who: Bradley Cooper
From: The Hangover, Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle
Why: Considering Mr. Cooper will be the voice of space travelling Raccoon in Guardians of the Galaxy, and he’s already played Face Man in the A Team, he’s a good pick for a goofy, beach bum bandit.
||Who: Ethan Hawke
From: Before Sunset, Lord of War and Training Day
Why: Depending on who would direct the film, and if they avoid turning the Rockford Files into fodder for a horrible comedy a la 21 Jump Street or Starsky and Hutch, you could call on Mr. Hawke to be a brooding, wronged-by-the-system Jim Rockford.
||Who: Vince Vaughn
From: Clay Pigeons, The Wedding Crashers and A Cool Dry Place
Why: If you go back far enough, you’ll notice Vaughn has a dramatic side to him. That will come in handy for the response Rockford makes for shooting his mouth of (in this case in a token Vaughn rant) and then getting socked by the bad guys.
||Who: Matthew McConaughey
From: Dazed and Confused, Sahara and The Lincoln Lawyer
Why: McConaughey has always had a knack for playing amoral guys who tend to respond in a socially acceptable manner when presented with a sticky situation. His cool exterior, and penchant for ballsy quips would be ideal for a 21st century Jim Rockford.