I once thought that Matt Damon was the only actor suitable to portray Dan White. But that was a whole month ago, before I saw Josh Brolin in American Gangster and No Country for Old Men. Now I'm satisfied that he too would be great as the bad guy in Gus Van Sant's Milk, and fortunately enough, he's close to being cast in the role. According to Variety, Brolin is in negotiations to replace the never-quite-locked-in Damon as the man who assassinated two prominent city officials in 1978. For those of you not living in the Bay Area in the late '70s and who haven't seen the Oscar-winning documentary The Times of Harvey Milkand who haven't been reading my coverage of this movie, Milk dramatizes the story of Harvey Milk, the first openly gay politician, who served as a San Francisco county supervisor before being shot by his former co-worker Dan White. Also killed by White at the same time was S.F. Mayor George Moscone.
While I still kinda wish Damon was attached, I have an easier time picturing Brolin under that little boy haircut of White's. Of course, just as Damon would have, Brolin will need a prosthetic dimple chin in order to get the look just right. Then again, it might be bad if he looks too much like the real White, who was eventually convicted of manslaughter and who later took his own life after serving five years in prison. The actor portraying the title character is Sean Penn, and he hardly looks anything like Milk. Anyway, it sure wouldn't be the first time an actor didn't look much like the famous person he or she is playing.
Additionally, The Hollywood Reporter tells us that Emile Hirsch and James Franco are also in negotiations to star, with Hirsch playing gay rights activist Cleve Jones and Franco playing Milk's lover and campaign manager, Scott Smith.