Patrick O-Brian The Fortune off War

Is Maturin playing something other than cricket in the match with the Admiral?

yes - Stephen thought it was hurling, which is one of the national sports of Ireland, and the fastest field game in the world.

Basically you have two teams, and the object is to score a goal or a point by getting the sliotar (ball) into the opposition’s goals or over the bar. more info at

The Fortune of War is a fantastic book, one of my favourites in the canon. I’m on my third readthrough at the moment, in anticiapation of the upcoming film

Thanks. One hopes they don’t condense too much into the film.

well the film title is actually two seperate books, at opposite ends on the series. So I’d be curious to see what the end result is like.

I am not convinced that Russell Crowe is the right man to play Jack Aubrey. I don’t think he’s cheerful enough.

Paul Bettany just might work as Maturin though.

I have a great deal of fondness for both characters.

I have to admit I have a certain amount of prejudice already - I cant see Crowe able to ‘inflate’ as JA does in moments of high passion. Having said that though, he does have physical attributes (though a little on the short side).
As for Maturin, I think Paul Bettany is a little … well ‘fresh’ is the only word I can find. Maturin needs to be yellow, withered and thin-lipped.
I cant wait to see how Killick turns out. Which he better be good or I shall kick up a proper Bobs-a-Dying!

I have always thought of Rutger Hauer for Goldilocks and Dustin Hoffman for Stephen. Arnold Schwartenegger for Awkward Davies.

LOL - now that would be funny! Everytime I read about Davies from now I’ll have the image of that lummox in my mind! Anthony Hopkins would get my vote for Joseph Blaine. Bonden and Babbington would be hard though. I heard Orlando Bloom for Babbington was being discussed at one point.

Great choices - both are too old now, but their types are great. Frankly, I am open to Russell Crowe - he has both the social immaturity and the battle resolve, IMHO, that Jack shows. Whether he can show the glee of playing an adequate violin with gusto or making a truly bad pun and thinking himself funny is what his portrayal will hinge on - can he show that he is full of life and eats it in great gulps, but is a little boy at heart? I think that is what you are speaking to, archergal

Too old would be the lesser of two wevils…

WordMan, I think you’re right! Jack’s just a big kid at heart, and somehow I just can’t see that in Russell Crowe.

And yes, Stephen should be older, but Bettany might just be odd enough to do Maturin.

Jeez, I love those guys.

WordMan, I think you’re right! Jack’s just a big kid at heart, and somehow I just can’t see that in Russell Crowe.

And yes, Stephen should be older, but Bettany might just be odd enough to do Maturin.

Jeez, I love those guys.

I hope we don’t get only the rivalry over Diana and sea battles.
It is safe to say there will be no drug addiction or midshipmen being splattered over the side.

It’s said that Crowe is very serious about the books, and that they had a good technical advisor. However, I can’t see it being anything more than a good action movie. The way that Jack and Stephen are, in their own ways, geniuses in some areas and total idiots in others would be nearly impossible to get across in the time you have in a film, and I just can’t see Crowe telling Jack’s stupid jokes.

Time will tell.

Rube I think you have it in a nutshell there. Portraying Maturin as a ruthless agent, a chilling murderer, an efficient and humane surgeon yet an incompetent booby about the ship; not to mention Jack’s many many character traits - thats a task that will probably be too much for the screen.

I saw the trailer on and while yes it is just a trailer, the focus seems to be more leaning toward the action sequences (not that I’m complaining too much mind cos that should rock!).

They had plenty of people on hand during shooting offering technical advice regarding seamanship, but I dont know how many people were there representing POB or the books. ALthough I also read in interviews that Crowe became a very big convert (most people do once they read one!)

I suppose it’ll still be a great film regardless, but I think the many subtler details in the books will be laid by the lee. I’d like to see an action scene relating JA’s victory ocer the Cacuefago or the epic battle with the Waakhemazoid (yes yes, atrocious spelling but I’m in work so I dont have the book to check it!)

Funnily enough I cant picture Bettany being allowed sing the praises of a tincture of laudanum or the blessed cocoa plant from Peru! Another thing - do you reckon any of the midshipment will get knocked on the head during the fil? I have a feeling Hollywood may not approve…

Nor would it approve of “Have you ever seen anything more beautiful? Er, cracking on with all sails”


Oh, but lord, please let tham have Babbington and the Hindi phrase book. “Woman, wilt thou lie with me?”

I am so looking forward to this. There’s only one thing that i’ve heard so far that’s jarring. Billy Boyd as Barret Bonden. A man who’s supposed to be a hulking great prize fighter.

Hmmm maybe Russell Crowe would make a good Bonden :slight_smile:

I wonder will periphary characters like Blaine or Joe Plaice get a mention. IMO they’re just as important to series as the main characters.

If my irritating enthusiasm hasnt given it away already deptford I’m also very much looking forward to this