Last fall, Blumhouse began casting its Firestarter remake by adding Zac Efron as Andy McGee, the father of Charlie McGee, the young girl whose pyrokinetic superpowers give the film its name. The movie follows Charlie and Andy as they go on the run from the government, and now the producers have just cast their main pursuer. According to Deadline, Michael Greyeyes will portray John Rainbird in the studio’s adaptation of Stephen King’s bestselling novel.
In King’s story, Rainbird was a Vietnam War vet with a heavily scarred face who later found work as an assassin for the secret government agency known as The Shop. During his hunt for Charlie and Andy, he becomes obsessed with the Charlie’s abilities, though he still aims to kill her. The character breakdown for Blumhouse’s remake calls Rainbird “a relentless powerful man who has been pushed into a violent life.”
Greyeyes is currently earning top marks for his starring role in Wild Indian, which premiered at Sundance last month. He also appeared on Apple TV+’s original series Home Before Dark and will return for the show’s second season. Last year, Greyeyes also acted opposite Mark Ruffalo in HBO’s I Know This Much is True. His other recent TV work includes stints on True Detective, Fear the Walking Dead, and V-Wars.
King plainly introduced Rainbird as a Native American in his book. But for some reason, only white actors have played the character in previous adaptations. George C. Scott starred as Rainbird in the original 1984 film alongside Drew Barrymore and David Keith. Years later, Malcolm McDowell filled the role on SYFY’s 2002 sequel miniseries, Firestarter: Rekindled. Greyeyes’ casting marks the first time that a Firestarter movie will honor the character’s race as it’s described in the novel.
Keith Thomas is directing Firestarter from a screenplay by Scott Teems. Blumhouse hasn’t set a release date for the movie.
How do you feel about Greyeyes playing Rainbird in the film? Tell us what you think in the comment section below!
Recommended Reading: Firestarter by Stephen King
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