Saoirse Ronan Lands Dual Lead Roles in Stephenie Meyer's The Host

thehost225.jpgBig news for Stephenie Meyer fans: The bestselling author's Twilight follow-up, The Host, has found its onscreen lead. Deadline reports that 17-year-old Saoirse Ronan (Hanna, Atonement) will play opposite herself in the Andrew Niccol-penned adaptation of Meyer's sci-fi/romance novel about an alien named Wanderer who takes over the body of earthling Melanie Stryder, only to discover that her human host's own memories and emotions affect her.

According to Deadline, the adaptation was developed independently by producers Nick Wechsler, Steve Schwartz, and Paula Mae Schwartz, with Meyer's close involvement. Niccol was brought on to adapt the novel and may return to direct.

But on to the details in Ronan's casting and why this is a promising turn in The Host's road to the screen.

It's unusual for young actors to play older; Ronan recently turned 17, while Mel Stryder is written as a 20-year-old. But filming could take a while to come together, and besides, few young actresses have the preternatural maturity of the Oscar-nominated Ronan, whose striking looks often lend her an ethereal, otherworldly quality. In short, fans of the novel should be happy.

thehost225.jpgExactly how the film will tackle portraying two distinct personalities sharing the same body will remain to be seen; Wanderer, or Wanda as she's eventually nicknamed, is a member of an alien race that invades planets and erases the memories of their physical hosts, but when she takes possession of Mel's body, both minds continue to exist at once -- think of the symbiotic Trills in the Star Trek universe (Jadzia Dax 4 Ever!) and you have an idea of how this might play out.

What's even more intriguing for Ronan is that The Host will mark her first adult romantic role, and how; the dual gig pits Ronan in a complex tangle of relationships against... herself. Talk about a conflict of interest.

Happy with the casting news, Host fans? Sound off below.

· 'Twilight Saga' Author Stephenie Meyer's 'The Host' Lands Saoirse Ronan To Star [Deadline]


  • Angelonthesun says:

    I don't know how I feel about this... Mel is supposed to be a brunette with an olive skin tone... is she going to be able to pull this off? I thought Jessica Alba would have been a better fit...

  • zacharykirk says:

    Excellant! I've been waiting for a real complicated role for Ms. Ronan to take. I'm not usually a fan for Meyer, but for the sake of aliens and my favorite actress I'm willing to give it a try. Can't wait.

  • John says:

    @ Angelonthesun
    Are you serious with considering Jessica Alba? What's with people putting such a heavy emphasis on matching the character's appearance? By reading the description of the character and how it's going to handled Alba acting chops wouldn't pull it off. Dye Ronan's hair brown and let her acting chops take of the material.
    Goodness, I wonder at times. Do fans want a crappy movie or a good movie? Half the battle of a good movie finding the right actor for the job (read: having acting chops) not overtly worrying if they look the part.

  • angelonthesun says:

    Then obvioulsy you either don't read OR don't have a very good imagination. Readers like to see their version of the character come to life on the screen. Its a disappointment when the directors "decide" to change the main characters appearance! Ronan is a great actress, yes, but she DOESN"T fit the physical bill. Morgan Freeman is a great actor too, that doesn't mean he'll fit the part for Uncle Jeb does it? All I'm saying is readers like to see their imagination come to life on the big screen. Hopefully they can work their movie magic and make Ronan look like a 20 year old sun-tanned brunette with hazel eyes (better be GREAT contacts to cover up her blue ones).

  • John says:

    "Then obvioulsy you either don't read OR don't have a very good imagination." Or that I find believability is more dependent on acting than what a character looks like. To compare Ronan's casting to Morgan playing Jeb is moot. Ronan may not look like the character, but her skin tone is manageable than Morgan ever will be. That's a crazy comparison.

  • Angelonthesun says:

    You are missing the entire point, readers (most readers however) enjoy seeing what they've imagined played out on screen. My comparison is not moot, it made my point. Looks matter as well as acting talent.
    Regardless, its pointless to attack another person's point of view. Make your own comment without bashing other's opinions.

  • John says:

    Well I disagree. I believe Ronan will do a fine job because she is a strong actress. Morgan is black and no movie magic would make him white - moot point. I also think that fans of books place too much emphasis on appearances and forget about the acting chops. I would bet money that if this film is made, and made well, "fitting" the book description to a T will be forgotten.

  • angelonthesun says:

    I can't wait to find out who they'll cast for Jared and Ian. I'm so excited! This movie is going to be great!

  • EJN says:

    Think about when they cast an actress who fit the bill physically but failed to perform on screen: Kristen Stewart in Twilight. She looked the part but her acting is terrible. If Saoirse Ronan can act, then that`s what matters. All she needs is a spray-tan and a dye job, but acting is what makes the movie good.

  • Evelyn says:

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