McAdams and Mirren make headlines


I like good headlines. It’s one thing to convey information in a small space; it’s quite another to do so in a way that makes me want to read the full story. I don’t soon forget those headlines. For example, I fondly remember “Pumpkins are as confusing as they ever were,” which was about the Smashing Pumpkins. Nothing says "music review" like the notion of a befuddling gourd.

A couple of days ago, I came across another headline that turned out to be better than the story: “‘Play’ Date for McAdams, Mirren.” I’ll admit it: I swooned a little.

So I clicked, but of course the story proved to be less intoxicating. It was a brief report of casting negotiations for a feature adapation of the BBC miniseries State of Play. Rachel McAdams and Helen Mirren will play a newspaper reporter and editor (in chief, I presume), respectively. Brad Pitt will also play a journalist, while Edward Norton is the politician who gives them all something to write about. Robin Wright Penn plays the politician’s wife.

No further details are available about the nascent film, but the U.K. series looks fascinating in its own right. The BBC website describes State of Play as “a complex thriller revealing the links between government and big business.” Bill Nighy had the Mirren role in the TV version, which bodes well — that guy tends to choose his parts carefully. Plus, Jodie Foster has proven that sometimes good characters originally written as men can be even better when a woman steps into the role.

As Prime Suspect fans are well aware, Mirren knows how to turn a BBC series into a stateside phenomenon, and I can definitely see her as a "tough" editor unearthing a conspiracy. But I’m more thrilled about the prospect of Rachel McAdams getting a dramatic role opposite some heavy hitters. It’s high time she became a huge star, rather than just a player in my headline-inspired fantasies.

Here’s McAdams in an interview, discussing Mean Girls. Seems she did both sports and drama in high school. That’s so fetch.

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