Charlie Hunnam’s upcoming role as King Arthur in Guy Ritchie’s Knights of the Roundtable: King Arthur is expected to be unlike any rendition of the legendary king we’ve ever seen. In fact, Entertainment Weekly recently released a first look of Hunnam in the iconic role, and they also sat down with the actor and director to discuss how this film is different than any that have come before it.
The image released online shows the former Sons of Anarchy star looking rugged and edgy as the new King Arthur, leaning on what looks to be Excalibur.
In talking about his new take on the iconic legend, Ritchie stated that he basically wanted to make King Arthur a more interesting character that had a bit of a darker side to him. This contrasts greatly with other portrayals of the character in the past, which have tended to characterize him as being entirely good.
“I think where the pitfall has often been is trying to make King Arthur bland and nice, and nice and bland… The two qualities make rather compatible bed companions. Unfortunately, they’re not interesting to watch. Luke Skywalker was always the most uninteresting character in Star Wars because he’s the good guy. Good guys are boring.”
Besides casting Crimson Peak star Charlie Hunnam, who has extensive experience playing a character with a troubled past, what else is different about this Arthur? Well, for starters, Ritchie’s version is a younger Arthur, whose parents abandoned him as a baby and was subsequently raised by three prostitutes. Consequently, Hunnam’s Arthur is a street-wise character who is at home in the dingier places of 5th century London.
“He’s a little bit rough around the edges, but he’s basically a survivor. He’s a hustler,” Hunnam revealed about his character.
“He’s a street kid. There’s definitely a harder edge to him than people would imagine. It’s sort of classic Guy Ritchie stuff.”
Meanwhile, another part of the film that is taking Ritchie outside his comfort zone is the fantasy aspect, which the director has decided to go all in on. Ritchie promises the film will include larger than life snakes, huge war elephants, and a monster named the Nemesis.
“Hopefully, loyalists won’t be too offended by what we’ve done,” producer Lionel Wigram stated regarding the more fantastical elements of the movie.
Catch Charlie Hunnam in Knights of the Roundtable: King Arthur when it premieres July 22, 2016.
[Photo by Jacopo Raule/Getty Images]