Well! Author Lee Child is retiring and handing Jack Reacher over to his brother, who will continue to write Reacher novels. I read about this with a great deal of relief. I’d suspected that Child was going to retire soon, and I was not looking forward to Reacher’s death day. With this new arrangement, Reacher will survive Child’s retirement! Thank you for saving Reacher for us, Lee Child!
Even more exciting, Lee Child himself is working with Amazon Prime to bring us a Jack Reacher series (!!!) with a Reacher that we loyal fans will love, and this brings me to the crux of today’s post. They’re looking for an actor to play Reacher, and I have a suggestion.
I’d previously written that I thought Bradley Cooper could be a contender for the role of Jack Reacher. Let’s just forget I ever wrote that, because that was before I (obsessively) watched The Witcher on Netflix.
In The Witcher, Henry Cavill plays the lead role of Geralt of Rivia, who is Jack Reacher in another dimension.
In my mind, Cavill isn’t a mere contender for Reacher. He IS Reacher.
Geralt of Rivia travels around, gets himself embroiled in situations, and brings down monsters, just like Reacher.
Geralt of Rivia’s “hmm” is the equivalent of “Reacher said nothing.” Watch the two-minute video below to hear his “hmm” in various contexts. It’s a versatile “said nothing,” for sure. You get more than just “hmm” in the video, though. The video captures 23 specific seconds of pure Reacher.
If you only have 23 seconds to spare for this video, go to:
0:18 – 0:28 for a sample of Reacher dialogue delivery and a classic Reacher moment.
0:43 – 0:56 for another listen to his voice and another classic Reacher moment.
Cavill has a deep, full voice that’s effortlessly menacing, and thunderous when needed. Like Reacher’s.
As for specs? Henry Cavill is 6′,1″. No problem. Put 4″ custom lifts in his shoes to make him 6′,5″ if it’s necessary for this otherwise perfect Reacher to stand exactly that tall. He certainly wouldn’t be the first actor to do it. I found an article that points to Vin Diesel, Sylvester Stallone, Russell Crowe, Mark Wahlberg, John Wayne, etc. as actors who’ve worn lifts to appear taller than they are… allegedly, anyway.
Cavill’s weight probably changes from role to role, but his walking-around weight is irrelevant. He has a Reacher-perfect frame, build, and overall physique.
Cavill is almost too pretty, but he escapes that deal-breaker with his strong and coarse facial bone structure. He has a face that would lend itself well to any practical-effect make-up needed to uglify him to Reacher standards. He dirties up pretty well, too.
There are details. Reacher’s nose has been described in comparison to a smashed-in pancake, or something to that effect. Cavill can achieve such a look. He has prominent brow ridges that add to his Reacher-appropriate, unrefined appearance.
Outfit Cavill with blue contact lenses. Cut his hair short and bleach it as blond as it is in The Witcher.
We should also consider that Henry Cavill tends to play heroic and stoic ultra-macho guys, so he has plenty of Reacher-demeanor experience, too.
Henry Cavill has everything it takes to play Reacher. He’s an actor with a workable Reacher face, of a workable Reacher height. He has an ideal physique and a deep, powerful voice. He can be scary just standing there. He captures Reacher’s demeanor and character traits and “says nothing” better than anyone I’ve seen. In the above-posted video, you’ll note that Cavill can match his facial expression to the context of each “hmm” he utters.
As Geralt of Rivia in The Witcher, Cavill exudes Reacher’s essence to where both Callaghan and I were prompted to remark on it.
Not to mention that Henry Cavill can act, too. No need to go looking for someone who’s exactly 6′,5″ and less of an actor!
Have I missed anything?