Kristen Stewart Going 'On the Road' for Kerouac Adaptation
by Ethan Anderton
May 6, 2010
In the midst of all the craziness surrounding the Twilight Saga, Kristen Stewart still found some time to take on a more grounded role in the rock music biopic The Runaways. Now it looks like she'll be doing the same with a role miles away from sparkly vampires as Variety says that she has signed on to star in Walter Salles' (The Motorcycle Diaries) forthcoming adaptation of On the Road, Jack Kerouac's 1957 novel, which tells the story through Sal Paradise, an autobiographical character, who sets off on a cross country journey thereby expressing the restless energy and desire for freedom that makes people rush out to see the world.
This adaptation has been gestating as far back as the late 70's when none other than Francis Ford Coppola (who is still producing via American Zoetrope) had optioned the book. Last month the first real development on Salles' incarnation of the adaptation arrived with the casting of Garrett Hedlund (from Tron Legacy). Hedlund will be playing Paradise's friend Dean Moriarity who inspires him to see America, while Stewart will play his on-again-off-again wife Marylou. taking on the lead role of Kerouac's alter ego Sal Paradise will be Sam Riley (Franklyn). It's interesting that Stewart has taken on another role in a film which prominently features a cross country vagabond after her role in 2007's Into the Wild. Maybe she has a thing for travelers?
On an interesting note, Salles, who has been developing this project for years as well, traveled across the US in Kerouac's footsteps and gathered enough material for a documentary, In Search of On the Road, which is a work in progress and should see release sometime, um, down the road (probably around the release of the film). Apparently he showed an hour of footage, including interviews with beat poets and characters from the book, at the San Francisco Film Festival last month. Both the adaptation and this documentary sound quite intriguing, so we'll be on the lookout for more details. Is Stewart a good addition to this cast?