A while ago it was announced that a big screen adaptation of the 1960′s television series, “The Big Valley” was in the works and now several pieces of casting news have been confirmed. First we found out that Oscar winner Susan Sarandon would star as the female lead and the matriarch of the Barkley Clan, and while at SXSW actor Ryan Phillippe has confirmed that he will also star in the film, which is set to begin production this summer!
The Big Valley television series centered on the Barkley clan, a family of ranchers who lived during the 1870s in San Joaquin Valley. They were led by their mother Victoria Barkley who was played by the legendary Barbara Stanwyck. The family dynamic was a bit dramatic because the father was killed and his illegitimate son Heath Barkley came out of the woodwork to claim what was rightfully his.
IMDB only has Sarandon, Phillippe, Bruce Dern and our very own Jason Alan Smith from Do Not Disturb listed as the attached cast, but in Phillippe’s latest interview he revealed that there’s more people involved…
According to Phillippe, “I think I’m doing a Western in May, with Susan Sarandon, Billy Bob Thornton, Richard Dreyfuss [and] Bruce Dern,” he said. “It’s called The Big Valley, which was a [television] series in the ’60s, and so it’s sort of based on that.”
It looks like he slipped Billy Bob Thornton and Richard Dreyfuss in there. We should have known that when a project has to do with guns, ranching, or a southern accent Thornton is never too far behind. So far with the exception of Sarandon, there aren’t any other women in this crew. On the show, there was a Barkley daughter named Audra, who was played by a young Linda Evans. She was really fair and almost too blond for comfort, but she wasn’t a superficially dumb character. I’m interested in seeing who they’ll bring on board to play her.
What do you think of the new cast of The Big Valley so far? Were you a fan of the original?