‘Eat, Pray, Love’ Movie Update: Bardem Signs On

Travel Blog  •  Eva Holland  •  06.10.09 | 4:38 PM ET

It’s been a couple of years since word came down that Julia Roberts would play the lead in the film adaptation of Elizabeth Gilbert’s juggernaut of a travel memoir, “Eat, Pray, Love.” Now, Variety reports that Javier Bardem will join the project as Felipe, the Brazilian suitor who pops up in Bali. Richard Jenkins has also signed on to play Richard, the ashram Texan.

It’s a heavyweight cast—Bardem and Roberts have a pair of Academy Awards between them, while Jenkins was nominated last year for “The Visitor”—and suggests that the movie’s producers are going for more than just box office success: They want Oscar. I’m happy with the casting choices so far (although I find Julia Roberts a little one-note sometimes, and would rather have seen maybe a Laura Dern type take on the role) but I think the movie will really stand or fall on the script. A memoir that focuses on the internal as much as “Eat, Pray, Love” does could be a little tricky to adapt.

“Eat, Pray, Love” is slated for release in 2011. Anyone else excited to see it when the time comes?

Eva Holland is co-editor of World Hum. She is a former associate editor at Up Here and Up Here Business magazines, and a contributor to Vela. She's based in Canada's Yukon territory.

9 Comments for ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ Movie Update: Bardem Signs On

Powered by Tofu 06.10.09 | 5:53 PM ET

Here’s to hoping it’s not as “Debby Downer” as the book. ;)  I’m waiting for Shantaram to be turned into a movie!

Sophia Dembling 06.10.09 | 5:59 PM ET

Julia Roberts… sigh. I didn’t like the book, now I’m prepared to not like the movie. She doesn’t do a thing for me.

Eva Holland 06.10.09 | 7:12 PM ET

Agreed - I’m one of the folks who liked the book a lot, but I’ll be surprised if Julia Roberts has the emotional range/depth required for the role. I like the Bardem and Jenkins castings, though.

Joanna Kakissis 06.10.09 | 7:32 PM ET

This is by far Elizabeth Gilbert’s weakest book. She has emotional range but the version of her that appeared in this book does not. So I’m thinking Julia Roberts will do just fine (and, no, I’m not going to see the movie.)

Daniel 06.10.09 | 7:53 PM ET

I think Laura Dern would have been a great choice.  She’s one of America’s best actresses and is sadly very under used.  I’m happy with Javier Bardem.

Julia Ross 06.10.09 | 8:16 PM ET

I’m with Joanna on this.

Jenny 06.11.09 | 3:00 PM ET

Daniel - I agree with the Laura Dern casting - that’s good. Javier Bardem, yes and Richard Jenkins (awesome actor - has everyone seen The Visitor?). Julia Roberts, not so much….

kathy 06.13.09 | 5:12 PM ET

I loved the book and look forward to seeing the movie.  Julia Roberts has a bit of a challenge ahead of her only because normally (for me) the book is almost always better than the movie.  Still…Good Luck to all, I look forward to the movie.

kathy 06.13.09 | 5:16 PM ET

Forgot to mention..(my daughter would not be happy about this, but..)  she would be perfect in this movie….she has always carried this depth in her, I first noticed it when she was 6 months old…you probably think I am nuts..

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