Multi-talented actor Neil Patrick Harris is reportedly negotiating with Netflix to star in the streaming service’s upcoming series A Series of Unfortunate Events. According to Variety, Harris would be playing the role of the Lemony Snicket villain Uncle Olaf. Jim Carrey previously portrayed the role in the Unfortunate Events film in 2004.
Netflix announced in September that filming would begin in the Spring of 2016 for the adaptation of Series. Casting reportedly began in December and fans favored Neil Patrick Harris as a shoe-in for the role of Uncle Olaf given his versatility in both comedy and drama. While Harris’ series How I Met Your Mother ended in 2014, Neil and his fellow Mother cast mates and characters have lived in infamy on Netflix, the very service he is negotiating for a role with. Harris has kept busy with an integral part in the thriller Gone Girl, hosting the Tonys and Oscars in 2015, and spending time with his five-year-old twins with spouse David Burtka, among other projects.
Neil Patrick Harris emerged on the Hollywood scene as a child star opposite Whoopi Goldberg in the Mark Medoff film Clara’s Heart. Harris’ portrayal of the young boy being cared for by Goldberg’s Jamaican housekeeper character earned Neil a Golden Globe nomination. Harris’ most notable role as a young actor, however, was for his role as a genius teenage physician in Doogie Howser M.D. Howser also earned Harris a Golden Globe nomination and Neil would continue to play Doogie for four seasons.
Neil Patrick Harris went on to prove he was a triple threat entertainer when he moved his career to Broadway. Harris portrayed Tobias Riggs in the 2001 version of Sweeney Todd, but it was his role as the emcee in Cabaret that got audiences talking. Neil’s turn in that show gave him top-billing on Broadway where Harris would go on to star in other hits such as Assassins and the touring company of Rent.
According to IGN, while rumors of Neil Patrick Harris’ casting in Unfortunate Events has excited fans of the series of books, another rumor of a departure has some concerned that things may be amiss for its development. Netflix had originally stated that former True Blood producer Mark Hudis would be at the helm for the series; however, insiders have reported Hudis has stepped down as the showrunner. Fans can breathe a sigh of relief knowing that Barry Sonnenfeld, a producer for the 2004 film version A Series of Unfortunate Events, is slated to direct.
Though Neil Patrick Harris’ most recent endeavor, the television series Best Time Ever with Neil Patrick Harris, was cancelled after only eight episodes, Harris will most likely find some comfort in knowing that Netflix has a tendency to order a bundle of episodes at once for their binge-watching fans. It turns out Harris could use some comfort these days. Earlier in the week, Neil Patrick Harris found himself a victim of burglary.
According to NBC, a 34-year-old man was taken into custody for stealing a park bench from Harris’ Manhattan home. It’s not known if Harris and his family were home at the time but Neil’s butler noticed the missing bench and decided to do a quick search of the neighborhood. Thanks to Harris’ quick-thinking butler, the bench was found nearby with the suspect trying to sell it.
While Neil Patrick Harris got his bench back, he also might have learned some tips from the criminal himself. After all, if Harris goes on to star as Uncle Olaf in Unfortunate Events, the character is continually trying to steal the inheritance of the Baudelaire children he has been left in charge of. Maybe Neil can simply use the experience as his motivation.
[Neil Patrick Harris cover image via Jamel Countess/Getty Images.]