Michael Copon in “One Tree Hill.”
Taylor Lautner as Jacob Black in “Twilight.”
As I posted earlier, MTV News is reporting that Michael Copon is one of the actors director Chris Weitz is talking to about playing Jacob Black in the “Twilight” sequel “New Moon.”
Taylor Lautner, who turns 17 in February, played Jacob in “Twilight,” the blockbuster film version of the first book in Stephenie Meyer’s mega-popular four-novel series. But in “New Moon,” Jacob’s body suddenly gets bigger and more mature as he begins transforming into a werewolf.
That’s prompting Weitz and Summit Entertainment to search for older, larger guys to take over the role from Lautner. Copon, who has been seen in “Scorpion King 2,” TV’s “One Tree Hill” and direct-to-video in the “Power Rangers Time Force” series, is 26, a full decade older than Lautner.
But as you can see from the photos, Lautner and Copon have similar appearances, so if the switch does occur, it won’t be too jarring from that perspective.
Ben Barnes as Prince Caspian.
In a bit weirder “New Moon” developments, MTV also is reporting that Ben Barnes, 27, who played Prince Caspian in “The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian,” is throwing his name into the hopper to play Aro in the sequel.
In Meyer’s book, Aro is a mind-reading vampire that is part of the powerful Volturi, who are kind of like the royal family and rule enforcers of the vampire world. Main characters Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart) and Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson) have a rather intense encounter with Aro on a trip to Italy. (I don’t want to say too much since I don’t want to spoil it for those who haven’t read the book.)
We also learn another key fact about Aro in “New Moon”: he’s visibly ancient. So I find word that Barnes wants to play the character in a film a bit odd. It seems more like a role for an Ian McKellen type.
Again, we’ll see how it all plays out between now and “New Moon”‘s closer-than-it-sounds release date: Nov. 20, 2009.