Michael Fassbender can, it seems, play anything: he’s made a convincing sex addict, hunger striker, rocker-with-paper-maché-head, German mutant and Rochester. But can he do The Dude? Such is the question you’ll surely be asking on hearing the news that Fassbender will, indeed, be playing The Big Lebowski‘s central character. Fortunately (and perhaps surprisingly) this is not news of a remake, but rather of another of Jason Reitman’s Live-Reads (he’s actually done the Coen Brothers classic before, more conventionally — almost too conventionally — starring Seth Rogen as The Dude).
As Entertainment Weekly noted in reporting the news, Fassbender is something of an unlikely choice, as “there’s something about him that’s … Precise. Controlled. Alert.” But the actor immediately said yes when asked to participate in the live-read, which will take place at Montreal’s Just For Laughs Comedy Festival.
According to Reitman, Fassbender is a “big fan” of Lebowski and “apparently quotes it daily.” The director — who’s known for Up in the Air, Juno and, sadly, Labor Day — said:
Unlike other Live-Reads where I have a decent sense of how, for instance, Seth Rogen going to play The Dude, I have no idea how Fassbender will do it. But he’s one of the our greatest performers, he’s on the current Mount Rushmore of actors, so I can’t wait to see what he comes up with.
Patton Oswalt will also participate in the event, playing John Goodman’s character Walter Sobchak. The Live-Aeads are usually held at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art’s Bing Theater and are put together by the museum and Film Independent; they happen monthly, with no rehearsals prior to the readings. Reitman called this particular upcoming reading a “homecoming,” as he was born in Montreal, but has never to date taken the reading series there.