Kyle Chandler Replaces George Clooney In ‘Catch-22’ Series | TV News
It was first reported last year that George Clooney was developing a limited series based on the famed novel Catch-22 written by Joseph Heller. Clooney was set to direct, produce and star in the project, but now only two of those are true. Despite having previously been announced to play the lead role of Colonel Cathcart, that role has now gone to Kyle Chandler.
Clooney is still heavily involved in the project, and will actually still appear on screen, instead taking on the supporting role of Scheisskopf. This move has reportedly taken place to allow Clooney more time to concentrate on directing and producing the project.
No disrespect to Chandler who is an excellent actor, but Hulu – where the series is set to air in the U.S. – are probably not quite as happy to have Clooney step away from the lead role considering the amount of star power he brings to any project. However, his involvement, plus the popularity of the source material, should help the series generate plenty of interest.
The series will be six parts, and has been written by Luke Davies and David Michod. Set in Italy during WWII, the series will tell the story of the artful dodger Yossarian (Christopher Abbott), a bombardier for the U.S. Air Force who is naturally upset at the thousands of people he has never met that are trying to kill him.
His real problem though, is trying to get out of the army. The crux of the novel comes from the paradoxical requirements for soldiers to be relieved from missions that would cause almost certain death. To be relieved from said missions, airmen had to be considered mentally unfit to fly, but any man who actually requested to be removed from duty was considered perfectly sane. Hence: catch-22.
Clooney’s new role as Scheisskopf will find him in the boots of a trainer commander at a cadet school in California. The character is known to be ambitious, but also humourless and cruel, and he’s known to be obsessed with parades and winning parade tournaments. His main focus is making the life of the cadets a living hell.
It’ll be interesting to see if the adaptation works. Clooney has found success behind the camera in the past directing period pieces (Good Night And Good Luck, The Monuments Men) so he seems to feel at home there. Obviously the source material is great, but it’s been proven in the past but that doesn’t necessarily equal an easy translation to the screen.
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