In about a month, we’ll see the latest in a long line of screen Robin Hoods: Russell Crowe, starring in Ridley Scott’s new film “Robin Hood” alongside Cate Blanchett as Maid Marian. The movie will open the Cannes Film Festival next month (its French title is, for the record, “Robin des Bois”), and be in theaters everywhere May 14. I’ve got high hopes, although the Crowe/Scott artistic pairing has been uneven (“Gladiator,” yes; “A Good Year,” no); Crowe’s an intriguing choice for the role, despite being older than most screen Robins, and I suspect the teaming of he and Blanchett just might be electric. (Sienna Miller was originally cast as Maid Marian, but dropped out, leading to one of those rare cases where the replacement is a much better fit than the original.)
But can he buckle his swash like the great Robin Hoods — most notably the dashing Errol Flynn in 1938’s merry Technicolor romp “The Adventures of Robin Hood” (who’s marvelous despite being hampered by a silly bob haircut)? Or do you prefer another actor? Here are a few of the many inhabitants of Sherwood Forest over the years, both serious and silly; pick your favorite.
Here’s a look back 72 years; note how beautiful Olivia de Havilland is as Maid Marian (just a year before she would play Melanie, in plainer makeup, in “Gone with the Wind”). Love that Technicolor.
And one more clip, just for fun, since it’s the weekend.