Ron Howard’s ‘In the Heart of the Sea’ Adds More to Its Cast

“In 1819, the Essex left Nantucket for the South Pacific with twenty crew members aboard. In the middle of the South Pacific the ship was rammed and sunk by an angry sperm whale. The crew drifted for more than ninety days in three tiny whaleboats, succumbing to weather, hunger, disease, and ultimately turning to drastic measures in the fight for survival.” That is the synopsis of the non-fiction book, In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex written by Nathaniel Philbrick. It is also the source material for Ron Howard’s latest film.

In the Heart of the Sea will star Chris Hemsworth (Thor), Cillian Murphy (Sunshine), Brendan Gleeson (In Bruges), and Benjamin Walker (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter). Tom Holland and Frank Dillane are also set to star.

The Wrap reports that two more actors are joining the film with Osy Ikhile and Ben Whishaw each signing on for a role. Ikhile will play a sailor named Peterson and Whishaw will be playing Herman Melville, the author of Moby Dick who found inspiration for his story while aboard the Essex. Whishaw, who’s on the up and coming list after starring in both Skyfall and Cloud Atlas, is a welcome addition to the film and seems like perfect casting for one of history’s most famous authors.

In the Heart of the Sea is gaining momentum with this casting news, and once Ron Howard wraps up the production and press for Rush, I expect him to move right along to this project. Charles Leavitt (Blood Diamond) is working on the screenplay with Howard’s long-time collaborator, Brian Grazer, also producing.

What do you think of In the Heart of the Sea? Do you think it’s shaping up to be a project you’ll be following?

If you’re interested in buying the book, you can do so here.

Written By Nick

Nick is a man obsessed with all things related to film. From the most obscure to the very popular, he’s seen it all and hopes to one day turn his obsession into a career that makes a lot of money so he can buy a monkey, a bulldog, and a full size Batman suit.

  • fernandorafaelquinterocastaeda

    Definitely sounds interesting. With the exception of Hemsworth, really like the cast.

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    Howard sees something in him, keeping him around after Rush. So we’ll see. Whishaw is one of my favorite actors on the rise right now. His performance is Cloud Atlas is haunting.

  • fernandorafaelquinterocastaeda

    Yes, he was one of the highlights for me. He’s one of my favorite actors, period. His performance in Perfume is one of the best I’ve ever seen.

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    I still need to see that one. Heard so many mixed things.

  • Christopher Jannette

    Cloud Atlas was a haunting movie in itself. One of my favorites regardless of what anybody says. That film will age well.

  • Rjam

    Perfume is amazing. It is quite obscure, and a little bit offsetting but it is a wonderfully crafted and acted movie. There are scenes in that movie that still linger in my mind.

  • fernandorafaelquinterocastaeda

    It’s pretty divisive but I freakin’ love it.

  • Jake

    Wow! If there was ever a book I’ve read that I’d like to see adapted to a movie, this is it! In The Heart Of The Sea is one of my favorite books of all time, it’s incredibly interesting. I grew up on Nantucket so the whaling industry is especially fascinating to me. I can take a walk down the wharves that today are filled with yuppies coming off their 150 million dollar yachts, but were once filled with real men coming home from years at sea doing the hardest work imaginable. We have a whaling museum filled with original memorabilia from those whaling ships, whale boats, harpoons, casks, scrimshaw, etc. It’s a fascinating piece of American history that I’m sure would be interesting to people who know nothing about it. Great idea, Ron!!

  • Jake

    Wow! If there was ever a book I’ve read that I’d like to see adapted to a movie, this is it! In The Heart Of The Sea is one of my favorite books of all time, it’s incredibly interesting. I grew up on Nantucket so the whaling industry is especially fascinating to me. I can take a walk down the wharves that today are filled with yuppies coming off their 150 million dollar yachts, but were once filled with real men coming home from years at sea doing the hardest work imaginable. We have a whaling museum filled with original memorabilia from those whaling ships, whale boats, harpoons, casks, scrimshaw, etc. It’s a fascinating piece of American history that I’m sure would be interesting to people who know nothing about it. Great idea, Ron!!

  • Mike Morley

    I bought this book while visiting Nantucket and found it very interesting and entertaining. I am psyched they’re making it into a movie and that Ron Howard will be at the helm. I hope they fill the beginning on location – that would be something.

  • Max

    One of my favorite nonfiction books. It makes the current TV fishing shows like Deadliest Catch” seem laughable.

  • Carl

    The writer of this article knows nothing about the book. It’s not a novel, it’s nonfiction. The Essex was not “lost at sea for 90 days”, it was rammed and destroyed by a sperm whale. The men were forced to survive in small whaleboats, where they eventually had to start eating each other to stay alive. it’s gonna be a pretty dark movie if Howard stays true to the source material. I hope he does. I can’t wait. Also, the character of Ahab was not based on any real life person, so there will be no “Ahab” character in the movie.

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    I’ve realized that now after a lot of the comments on Reddit. I was going off of a news article, and knew nothing of the book. I apologize.

  • Jc

    It’s not a novel, it’s an historical story. It actually happened

  • TravMac

    This is why the internet is full of BS. People write quickly without doing research for them self, or even a little fact checking on behalf of their own reputation. Not trying to bash Nick individually, just making a point that there should be more pride in the industry of providing information. The world is moving too fast, and it’s making us all stupid.

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    I fixed the article. I admit I wrote it quickly, but I never thought it would get this much attention.

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    After all the attention this story is getting, I’m going to go and pick up the book today!

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    It’s long, but I immediately wanted to watch it again and again after finishing it. Flew under the radar, unfortunately. Thanks for the comment!

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    I need to check it out now. It was on my watch-list for awhile. Didn’t know Whishaw was in it.

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    I fixed it. Sorry!

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    Can’t wait to read it! Thanks for stopping by!

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    MA has great filming incentives, so let’s hope he does!

  • TravMac

    Sorry, I really didn’t mean to get on your case. You just highlighted an issue, and I left my comment in the endless void of the internet as a method of release for my own good. Lol.

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    Haha, no hard feelings. Any and all feedback is good.

  • H.

    Even thought that’s not really an excuse (you should write like everyone’s reading!) good on you for amending it accordingly. Great piece.

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    Thank you. I’m definitely going to keep my eyes on my things a lot more moving forward.

  • Kyle

    Fantastic book. I hope the movie does well enough to generate interest in making additional movies, based on Nathaniel Philbrook books. Sea of Glory would make a great miniseries… Just a thought…

  • Kyle

    **Philbrick… Sorry typing quickly, didn’t proof read

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    I need to start reading his stuff!

  • Brenda Kaye Lester

    I love the book, and I highly recommend it. I am also a lover of whaling stories, from Procol Harum to Herman Melville. I’m counting on Mr. Howard’s talent to bring this book to life. The story of the sinking of the ESSEX is the precursor of MOBY DICK.

  • Brenda Kaye Lester

    This book is a good start.

  • Brenda Kaye Lester

    Why are people afraid of the word “cannibalism”?

  • Brenda Kaye Lester

    I went to Nantucket two hundred years too late.

  • Brenda Kaye Lester

    I love whalers. My dream was to see Nantucket, and I went there for my birthday. The best part was being on the ferry. I was allowed to meet the captain and watched with the crew as they landed the ferry. I was in heaven. The island is like you describe it, JAKE. I was disappointed, but a taxi driver took us out to some outlying places away from the lubbers.

  • Brenda Kaye Lester

    You won’t be able to put it down. And you’ll learn some history. Ralph Waldo Emerson is in there, along with Melville.

  • Dusty Wallace

    Of all the articles Nick has written, who would’ve thought this one would become so triumphant.

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    I thought the same thing… 800 posts later and this gets the love.

  • http://www.cinekatz.com/ Nick Powell

    Thanks for stopping by. If you want to keep updated on movie news, reviews, and trailers, I’d appreciate it if you subscribed on the right and liked us on Facebook. :)