I have been trying to think up a comparable actor for Colin Firth and I’m pretty much coming up with two parts Michael Caine and one part Alec Guinness. Caine and Guinness were so often the anti-James Bonds – Caine as the be-spectacled and put-upon Harry Palmer and Guinness as George Smiley. That seems to be what Firth is going for too, at least since he appeared in the crazy amazing Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy adaptation as the charming and nefarious Bill Haydon. Now Colin Firth will be spying for Britain once again in the adaptation of Charles Cummings’ novel A Foreign Country.
A Foreign Country follows a disgraced Secret Service man searching for the missing chief of MI6, leading him eventually to France and, of course, massive conspiracies. Firth already has plenty of experience ousting conspiracies since his turn in Tinker Tailor and I can totally see him as a disgraced agent doing one last job.
How did Firth land the role? By producing the film, of course. Firth’s production company Raindog will produce A Foreign Country, as well as being behind one of Firth’s upcoming films, The Railway Man with Nicole Kidman. Firth has also signed on with Matthew Vaughn’s The Secret Service about … the Secret Service. So he’s really getting mileage out of this spy thing.
It’s not all spies, though. Firth’s company is also developing The Loving Story, about an interracial romance based on the period novel The Body On The Tracks by Mara Leveritt. In other words: Colin Firth will keep working until Colin Firth don’t want to work no more.
Not that I’m complaining. As far as I’m concerned, Firth is one of the better and more serious actors working today. If he does not always pick perfect films, he certainly picks interesting ones. He’s come a long way from Mr. Darcy swimming in a pond, hasn’t he?
No word yet on other cast and crew for A Foreign Country, but it is an intriguing prospect. I love a good spy thriller almost as much as I love a good Colin Firth.