If you’re the kind of person who likes true crime, chances are you’ve finished Tiger King by now. Actually, chances are you watched it in one night, then read 14 articles about it, listened to a podcast, and watched it a second time. How much Tiger King content is too much? It’s a trick question, because it could never be too much. And speaking of Tiger King content, lots of people are already starting to think about a scripted version of this wild, wild story.
As with any story like this, it’s only a matter of time before we get a movie or miniseries about Joe Exotic and his f*cked up friends and enemies, and it turns out that one is already in the works. Last fall, before most of us even knew what was coming, it was announced that a scripted project based on the Joe Exotic season of the Over My Dead Body podcast is being developed as a TV miniseries. While there’s no date or network attached yet, obviously the best use of our time is to imagine which famous faces might play our new favorite characters. But aside from wild guesses, there are actually a bunch of celebs who have already thrown their names into the ring for a Tiger King adaptation.
First of all, let’s talk Carole Baskin. While the rest of the casting is up in the air, Kate McKinnon is already set to step into Carole’s leopard print shoes, and she’ll also executive produce the miniseries. While I’m sure there are dozens of actresses that would love to don some animal print and dive into the world of Carole, it’s hard to imagine anyone doing a better job than Kate McKinnon. Really, I would watch a miniseries just about Carole, but obviously there are some other important characters to be cast here.
Arguably the most iconic character in Tiger King is Mr. Joe Exotic, and it’s fun to imagine who might transform into this gay polygamist zoo owner with a failed political career and a detailed criminal history. Last week, Dax Shepard threw it out there own Twitter that he like, really wants to play Joe Exotic. This feels like it would make sense, and things got even more real after someone on Twitter Photoshopped Dax’s face onto a picture of Joe. I mean… this is absolutely something I’d be interested in seeing.
Starting @daxshepard pic.twitter.com/yleL1LYgc4
— Photoshopped AF (@photoshopped_af) March 26, 2020
But not everyone wants to see Dax Shepard in the role. His friend Edward Norton wants a shot at Joe Exotic, and replied to Dax, telling him that he’s “way too young and buff”, suggesting that he’s still young enough to play Joe’s second husband, Travis. I don’t know if I see that, but I’m definitely intrigued by the idea of Edward Norton doing some method work to play Joe Exotic. Honestly, I would watch this movie no matter who’s in it, but these are some compelling options right off the bat.
Um, step aside, pal. You’re way too young and buff and you know it. You could probably pull off Maldonado still, actually. Wouldn’t that be fun?
— Edward Norton (@EdwardNorton) March 26, 2020
But wait! There’s more competition, and this time it’s coming from an Oscar winner. The next day, Jared Leto entered the conversation, posting selfies in a makeshift Joe Exotic costume, complete with a stuffed animal lion. Tbh, I feel like Jared would be the best Travis, but whatever, I don’t even know if any of these guys are actually in consideration. But for now, I will gladly accept these A-list men competing with each other. Honestly, they should put this quarantine time to good use and post some at-home audition tapes. It’s what we need most in these dark times!
— JARED LETO (@JaredLeto) March 27, 2020
Another popular casting idea for Joe Exotic is Danny McBride, who, let’s be honest, wouldn’t even need that much of a crazy transformation to fit the role. That’s not an insult, just an observation. At this point, I’ve been bored inside for so long that even I’m considering a mullet.
Danny McBride was born to play the role of Joe Exotic in a potential movie. pic.twitter.com/QKPJ3K54Nr
— Joe Jenkins (@josephjenkins) March 28, 2020
So far, it seems like the famous actors aren’t lining up to play Doc Antle, probably because he’s less outrageous and more just… creepy. Personally, I feel the best fit would be a hologram of Philip Seymour Hoffman (the resemblance is startling), but I would also support Christian Bale in his Dick Cheney prosthetics from Vice. There are really so many possibilities. And for the role of Jeff Lowe, I nominate Woody Harrelson, who knows exactly how to channel the right kind of sh*tty white dude energy. Whatever the final casting looks like for these two, I’m sure it’ll be something to behold.
Even further down the list, it looks like Jessica Chastain and Bryce Dallas Howard are ready to duke it out for a part that I didn’t even remember from the documentary. Jessica Chastain posted a clip of a redhead singing in an ad for Big Cat Rescue, telling her famous doppelgänger, Bryce Dallas Howard, to back off. Howard responded, saying “it’s on.” Personally, I would love a cameo from both of these women, and I’m sure they could recreate the commercial with two singing redheads. The more, the merrier.
It’s on 😉🤣 #TigerKing https://t.co/UIw6oifaMY
— Bryce Dallas Howard (@BryceDHoward) March 29, 2020
Knowing that Kate McKinnon is locked in for this project, I really can’t wait to see how the rest of the cast fills out, because this story needs to be told in as many ways as possible. Honestly? Make two movies! Put one on Netflix and one on Hulu! Make a series and a movie! Who cares, I love tiger sh*t! All I know is that this project better be fast-tracked, because I don’t know how much longer I can wait for it. It’s Tiger King’s world, and we’re all just living in it.
Images: Image: Courtesy of Netflix; photoshopped_af, edwardnorton, josephjenkins; brycedhoward/Twitter