Matthew Macfadyen is the Sheriff of Nottingham in Robin Hood?

April 24, 2009

Matthew Macfadyen

We thought the entire cast had been announced for Ridley Scott's Robin Hood, but apparently not. SlashFilm has discovered that British actor Matthew Macfadyen (Pride & Prejudice, Death at a Funeral, Frost/Nixon) has been cast as the Sheriff of Nottingham in Robin Hood. But how can this be, wasn't Russell Crowe supposed to play that role and Robin Hood? If you missed it, in February we posted an update from Ridley Scott who clarified that they had gotten rid of that dual casting. But when all the casting confirmations came in around March, the Sheriff was mysteriously missing. At least we know who it is.

Word is that Macfadyen first revealed at a Masterclass event that he was in Robin Hood, but that news didn't get very far. However, on the fansite Darcylicious, they eventually confirmed with Macfadyen's agent that he is indeed starring as the Sheriff of Nottingham. It's odd to see a fansite getting confirmation, but it otherwise seems legitimate, and now we don't have to be suspicious about that missing casting anymore. Although the idea in general was widely criticized, it may be unfortunate to some to now know that Russell Crowe won't be playing the dual roles anymore. That would've at least been interesting to see, I think.

As for Macfadyen, he's a great actor for sure, but he's very soft spoken. I might even call him a lightweight. But maybe this is a chance for him to really show us what he's got and push his own limits. That is, if this is the villain that I'm imagining the Sheriff of Nottingham to be. The plot of Ridley Scott's Robin Hood will follow Robin from his early days in King Richard's army to his return to Nottingham to his creation of a band of mercenaries who challenge the sheriff and eventually try to prevent civil war. If you haven't already seen it, we posted a photo of Crowe as Robin Hood a few days ago. Macfadyen will shoot in May and June.

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  • viral
    i think i saw him on bafta night and he looked porky... the guy might be a good actor and whatever but he better chape up if he wants to play the sherrif... i like the idea of crowe in the dual casting ...
  • Timothy
    Well, I love it when actors break out of their mold. MacFayden has as 'nice guy', Pride and Prejudice, 18TH century thing going on right now and if he can break out of that and play a great villain we'll know he's a good actor.
  • Aaron
    Seems like he'd make a good Prince John more than Sheriff of Nottingham...?? I'm kind of glad they didn't go with Crowe in dual roles - it's hard to see that not coming across as campy, gimmicky, or distracting.
  • LizzieJ
    I have no doubt that Matthew Macfadyen can deliver - check him as badass agent Tom Quinn in Spooks/MI-5 or as a tortured war journalist in In My Father's Den. He's extremely talented and will hold his own against Russell Crowe. As for porky? He's running the London Marathon on Sunday, so I don't think you need to worry on that account.
  • Sue T.
    This is exactly the type of role that Matthew Macfadyen can do. His roles have been so varied and yet the role of the bada$$, sexy villian is not in his resume (or CV). This is a role that has been a long-time coming for him, and I, for one, can't wait to see how it turns out. And, porky? No way!
  • I'm becoming less and less interested in this movie
  • Scott McHenry
    Never heard of this guy
  • Well I agree. He does seem like a light wieght in his movies... But I am interested to see in what he can do? I'm sure Riddly Scott can turn him into a bad ass Sheriff!
  • max
    brilliant choice, the guy can definitely act--shakespeare, comedy, spy, paedo...his take on the Sheriff should be one to watch
  • John
    Definitely a bit of nuanced casting there!
  • elessar
    It should be noted that McFadyen's Sheriff will not be the principal villain in this version. As I've understood it, that role is filled by Mark Strong's Guy of Guisborne. Crowe vs Strong. Now, there's a battle I can't wait to see.
  • Colleen
    Both Russell and Matthew have wonderful speaking voices....I'm becoming more and MORE intersted in this movie!
  • Hyacinth
    Didn't expect that one! Makes me even more curious to see how "new" and "fresh" Scott's take will be.
  • harry
    This could work I suppose, now that Steve Innes and Christian Bale are no longer even attached to this movie. Still, I was looking forward to a Steve Innes based King Richard (or even Sherrif as first reported) or a Christian Bale based Sherrif and sadly the addition of MacFayden dores not hit the right chord with me - don't get me wrong, I do like Spooks but to me it's just a cheap U.K. version of 24 and like Keifer Sutherland, Matt MacFayden probably is best suited to the small screen only. As already posted he seems to quiet to be someone as overbearing as the Sherrif. Even so, this is a tospy turvy movie so perhaps the new Sherrif is not who we thought he was.
  • sue benson
    He could play maid marian,and I would still go see it.I think Matthew Macfadyen is so HOT.
  • RobinDaHood
    I always thought that 24 was an overblown and ridiculous show and that the real deal was McFadyen and MI5/Spooks. I've loved Matthew in The Way We Live Now and then really got into MI5 and loved that show and his character in it. I am excited for the movie Robin Hood and now that Matthew has been added to the cast I am even more excited about this movie. In the two things I've seen him in, I can't wait to see what he's going to do with the character of the Sherrif. And he's got a wonderful speaking voice just like Russell Crowe does.
  • nouki
    Me too!!! ! think he'll do gr8! After watchin' Spooks who wouldn't think like that? XD and the last movie Pride & Prejudice! he was just awesome! XD
  • liza
    Matthew Macfadyen is a beautiful man! and is an excellent actor! any role that it interprets does perfectly!
  • kristin
    mattew Macfayden is the best
  • Brian F
    They should have chosen the actor "Michael Wincott" for sheriff. The Sheriff is supposed to look mean and SOUND mean. "Michael Wincott" has these 2 features that would make him the perfect sheriff.
  • Nina
    Matthew Macfadyen 'porky'? Don't you think that description goes better with Russell Crowe? I had never seen a Robin so old and 'porky' as this one. Look at the pictures taken in the set of the movie. He even has 'love handles' and he looks extremely heavy on those images! This story must be taking place when Robin was 'over the hill'. Robin Hood is one of my favorite stories and 'if' I ever go to see this one, it will be to see Matthew Macfadyen (who looks gorgeous anyway you look at him) and Cate Blanchet. Casting Russell Crowe as Robin Hood? Please!
  • nouki
    yah!! Nina is absoluely right! Matthew Macfadyen is gorgeous! in fact we should look for more words to make him justice ^^ I really don't know why Crowe has the role of Robin Hood **snorts** "This story must be taking place when Robin was 'over the hill'. OMG keep humoring us I beg. If I go to see the movie it will be for Macfadyen and Blanchet that's for sure!
  • Georgina
    MATTHEW MACFADYEN!!he is a beautiful man! it has much bearing and he is an excellent actor! I do not have doubts that perfectly interpreted the roll of Sheriff and until the of Robin Hood. Crowe I do not understand so that they gave the roll him of Robin Hood, he is an old man! to never make it and the truth seen a so old Robin Hood
  • C
    ohh he is such an amazing actor! so talented! and abosolutely gorgeous! i hadn't taken much notice of this movie until now..
  • peter christopher
    i worked on this movie and predict that the battle sequences will astonish everyone. Been in the business years and have never seen such action - 150 mounted knights in a charge ? more stunt men than ever before , beach landings , castle sieges , Even I cant wait to see and I know how it ends !
  • I can see Matthew MacFadyen as Sheriff of Nottingham in his up coming movie in Robin Hood. He is a great Actor and any role he is placed into he will make it his own. He has an excellent future ahead of him. He is simply a Great talent.
  • Patricia
    I can see Matthew as almost anybody. He is very talented and versatile. Just because he is 'soft-spoken' doesn't mean he can not deliver in a movie! I am sure he will play the role as he always does, perfectly! As for the guys who haven't heard of him, you should ask your wife, girlfriends etc. they might help you. I for one, can't wait to see him as Athos in The Three Musketeers, he will look gorgeous I'm sure. That is the perfect role for him in this movie and I guessed it right!
  • Nouki
    OMG OMG! He's going to be Athos in the Three Musketeers?! how exciting! I can't wait to see that. LOL I see Jeanette has a point. Macfadyen is very talented and delivers perfectly indeed XD My gfs from highschool and college for one, know Matthew Macfadyen pretty much for the role he had as the famous Mr Darcy in Pride & Prejudice. I also enjoyed watchin' him as Arthur Clennam in Little Dorrit ^^ and without forgettin of course of his role as Tom Quinn in Spooks/MI-5 XD




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