Tail Slate recasts the 1976 film ‘The Eagle Has Landed’

Rather than remaking classic films like True Grit or the upcoming Magnificent Seven we’ve decided to take a crack at a remake of a movie that made money and wasn’t panned by the critics.  In 1975 the bestselling The Eagle Has Landed was released.  The story of a secret German plot to assassinate Winston Churchill when he’s on a weekend in the English countryside, the book is well-written and while fictional; sounds more like a history of something that was kept secret.

The movie starred Michael Caine as the disgraced half English-half German commander of a paratroop unit.  He saved a Jewish girl from the SS and it got him court-martialed.  Now he and his highly trained troops are selected for this mission.  Robert Duvall is the intelligence officer who is responsible for overseeing the mission.  Donald Pleasance portrays Heinrich Himmler, head of the SS.  Donald Sutherland is “Liam Devlin,” an IRA soldier who is uniquely qualified to do the advance work for the mission.  Jenny Agutter is the local farm girl who unwittingly aids Devin.

So let’s recast this movie.

Michael Caine as Oberst Kurt Steiner in ‘The Eagle Has Landed’

Tom Hardy will make a great Kurt Steiner


One of the key roles in the film is that of “Oberst Radl,” the German intelligence officer assigned by Himmler to oversee this assassination attempt.

Robert Duvall as “Oberst Radl” in ‘The Eagle Has Landed’

We see Eric Bana in this role.


The leader of the American forces who respond once the ruse of the Germans is blown was portrayed by Larry Hagman.  Colonel Pitts was made out to be a buffoon by Jack Higgins in the book.

Larry Hagman as “Colonel Clarence Pitts” in ‘The Eagle Has Landed’

The best choice for the remake is Vince Vaughn

“Joanna Grey” is the resident of Studley Constable, who is actually a German agent.  Jean Marsh played her.

Jean Marsh as “Joanna Grey”

After seeing Amy Hargreaves in How He Fell in Love, we think she’d be great in the part.


Donald Sutherland gives a strong turn as the IRA soldier sent in to prepare the way for the German paratroopers.  He falls in love with a local girl, “Molly Prior,” played by Jenny Agutter.

Donald Sutherland and Jenny Agutter in ‘The Eagle Has Landed’

We thought that a real-life couple would be perfect to replace them.

Dax Shepard and Kristen Bell will play “Liam Devlin” and “Molly Prior” in ‘The Eagle Has Landed’

Donald Pleasance, who made a great villain as “Ernst Stavro Blofeld” in ‘You Only Live Twice,” also made a menacing Heinrich Himmler.

Donald Pleasance as Heinrich Himmler in ‘The Eagle Has Landed’

And the best possible choice for this role was easy to pick.  He has experience playing a German officer.

Christoph Waltz in his Academy Award winning role as Standartenführer Hans Landa in 2009’s ‘Inglourious Basterds’

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