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Popcorn & Prejudice: A Movie Blog

Seattle Times writer Moira Macdonald muses on moviegoing. Email Moira: mmacdonald@seattletimes.com.

November 16, 2010 at 9:41 AM

Carey Mulligan = Daisy Buchanan in “The Great Gatsby”

Yes, I know it’s supposed to be Harry Potter Week on the blog, but News About Movies Based on My All-Time Favorite Books (sorry, the J.K. Rowling books don’t rank that high with me, though I enjoyed them) always trumps pretty much everything else. Baz Luhrmann announced yesterday to Deadline.com that Carey Mulligan, the Oscar-nominated star of “An Education,” would play Daisy Buchanan in his upcoming screen adaptation of “The Great Gatsby; Leonardo DiCaprio and Tobey Maguire are expected to star opposite her as Jay Gatsby and Nick Carroway, respectively. Mulligan, in perhaps the most perfect movie-star reaction to casting news I’ve ever heard, was at a fashion-industry event in New York when she got the call from Lurhmann and “burst into tears on the red carpet in front of Karl Lagerfeld and Anna Wintour.” Which I bet happens to them all the time.
I think this is potentially terrific casting, though playing the shallow, airy Daisy (whose voice is famously “full of money”) will be a role unlike any she’s done. Anybody else catch her wonderful performance in “Never Let Me Go,” which for some reason nobody seems to be talking about? (Maybe because nobody saw the movie.) Completely different character, of a woman old before her time — and, for that matter, a world away from the giddy teen of “An Education — just beautifully played, as Mulligan seemed to age before our eyes. Can’t wait to see “Gatsby,” but it’ll likely be a while; though Luhrmann is making this his next project, he hasn’t yet announced production dates.

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