Harry Styles is returning to the movies. The pop star, who now manages to bridge modern pop and old-school rock together like a pro, has found his followup role to his intense turn in Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk. Styles has signed on to star in the next film from Olivia Wilde, who earned acclaim with her feature directorial, Booksmart.
Don’t Worry Darling
Styles will play a lead role in Wilde’s next film, titled Don’t Worry Darling, which is a thriller from New Line. Originally, Shia LaBeouf was cast in the movie, but had to drop out and the “Watermelon Sugar” singer is taking his spot. Florence Pugh (Midsommar) and Chris Pine (Star Trek) are already a part of the cast, as is Wilde. The story is set in the 1950s at a Utopian community in the California desert. Nothing else is known about the story or Styles’ key role. Apparently, Warner Bros. has been high on Styles since his acting debut in Dunkirk, which was surprisingly strong for somebody’s first major film role.
Styles’ Dunkirk Performance
Styles was suitably intense in Dunkirk. He delivers one of the film’s most grueling moments, when he decarles survival isn’t fair. It’s a terrifying moment from the crowd-pleasing singer, who completely disappeared as British officer fighting to stay alive at all cost. The desperation and fear in Styles’ performance felt real and immediate, just like the rest of Nolan’s masterpiece. It was a great, promising debut from the rock star. Most musicians don’t transition into acting as easily or as convincingly as Styles has so far.
Styles, The Actor!
The artist hasn’t been taking roles left and right these past few years. Styles’ only other major gig was hosting Saturday Night Live, and honestly, that was where he showed some rust as a performer. Comedy or performing comedy live clearly wasn’t in his wheelhouse or drawer of skills, but maybe one day it will be. He didn’t look as comfortable on SNL as he did in Dunkirk. There was one role that Styles probably would’ve worked wonders with that he was up for consideration: Elvis Presley. The artist was almost cast in the role for Baz Luhrmann’s biopic, which is now shooting.
For whatever reason, Styles didn’t get the part, but it was easy to imagine the musician understanding and playing the King better than most actors. I’m sure, at the very least, we’ll one day see Styles in a musical of some kind. There’s always a Bowie biopic waiting to happen.
Another major role the artist was up for was in Disney’s The Little Mermaid remake, but perhaps wisely, he passed. Those Disney remakes are more miss than hit, and Styles is an artist who makes hits. Not only successfully but creatively, and Disney is often creatively bankrupt. Who wants to see an original artist such as Styles in an unoriginal Disney movie and in a role anybody could play?
The Next David Bowie?
There will only ever be one David Bowie. No artist will hold a candle to him. I’m not comparing Style’s talents to Bowie’s, but they do feel cut from the same cloth. Styles has more than a bit of glam rock about him, and a rock star charisma similar to Bowie’s that translates on the big screen. It’s probably a part of why Nolan cast him in Dunkirk, maybe as a bit of a nod to the Bowie war film, Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence. Bowie was, without question, a great actor with a towering, dreamlike presence on film. Hilarious, too, in Into the Night.
A major musician’s charisma is next level, just a special thing that either can or can’t work well in movies. Even Rihanna, someone of her creative power, hasn’t quite found her footing in film and television. Styles, on the other hand, isn’t playing Battleship and seem to be seeking roles that, like Bowie, call for a unique charisma. Styles will likely begin shooting Don’t Worry Darling later this year. As we await its likely 2021 release date, at least we have his wonderful album, Fine Line, to keep coming back to.