James Purefoy as Simon Templar alias The Saint

Monday, April 25, 2011

James Purefoy as Simon Templar alias The Saint

As first reported here in December of 2007, James Purefoy is finally at last all set to play the new Simon Templar in the forthcoming TV series of The Saint. We may have jumped the gun a bit back in 2007, but we weren't wrong -- just early!

James Purefoy has written an introduction to Ian Dickerson's The Saint on TV, in which he talks about his forthcoming role as Simon Templar. Shooting is reported to be slated to start in July 2011 in New Orleans.

The newest version of The Saint is being produced by Cajun Pictures who've acquired a pilot script written by William J. MacDonald and Burl Barer.

James Purefoy, who will play the new Saint, was screen tested for the role of James Bond in 1995 for Goldeneye, and throughout 2004 and 2005 Purefoy's name was rumoured as a possible candidate to replace Brosnan as agent 007 in future James Bond films. These rumors surfaced again before the 2006 film, Casino Royale.

In December 2007, James Purefoy was first rumored to have been cast in the role of Simon Templar alias The Saint, and that was put on-hold due to production issues and his role in The Philanthropist. In 2011, it appears that Purefoy is coming back to the role of The Saint!

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19 comments for James Purefoy as Simon Templar alias The Saint


Blogger hudson hawk said...

Overall , despite the wait , seemingly endless delays , I am glad he was chosen. I believe him to be a good fit. The toughness , humor along with the sharp edge of real violence could be brought out in Purefoy's adaptation of Templar. Hope his car in the very least matches the P1800. Nothing else since I had that Volvo has anything really topped it.

Monday, April 25, 2011  
Blogger Coolio said...

I hope this is offical. Like I said before I been a fan of the Saint I got collections. Or The Full Collections on DVD including Val Kilmer & Simon Dutton. I glad James Purefoy has reconsidered the role. All I want the filming to be done & we can look forward seeing it soon or next year. The car should be a Volvo.

Monday, April 25, 2011  
Blogger saint mark said...

While I believe he is perfect for the part, this time I will rejoice once the first movie has been shot. And as for any series I believe it when they get going. And of course they'll be added to my existing collection of Saintly goodies.

Welcome back Purefoy, I hope this time you'll stay aboard and finish the job.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011  
Blogger Dan Bodenheimer said...

I'm not sure it will be a Volvo this time, only for the reason that there isn't a new Volvo that really fits the bill. The rumors I've heard are very good, none the less, and I'm very excited and hopeful that this new show will have all the right elements in place!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011  
Blogger Unknown said...

This is great news. Hope he drives a new Volvo C70, but who cares... The Saint is back!!!

Sunday, May 01, 2011  
Blogger Giselle said...

Oh dear, I feel like a sentimentalist. I'm not sure I do like Purefoy (46) as Templar. I guess the direction of film has been to keep the Saint current. I would really like to see a big budget period piece with Hoppy, Teal and a few of the gang with the saint driving an Hirondel. I still lament the fact Ralph Feines never did the role (which I think he is too old for now). And shooting starts in New Orleans. I can only hope they allow Purefoy to keep his accent.

Sunday, May 08, 2011  
Blogger Matthew Engel said...

Ugh...I have very little faith that this will be any good. I don't think the people helming the return, (minus Roger if indeed he's involved) will give this a proper revamp. I understand it has to be updated and attractive to new audiences...but I feel like this will be totally derailed in favor of an American Dramatic crap fest. It think anyone attempting to bring this show back should look at Doctor Who's return to TV as a great example of how to do things correctly and not 60's revamps like Hawaii 5-O and the recent and incredibly boring The Prisoner. If these producers were smart they would call me. I've read the books...watched all the Roger Moore stuff and seen all the films...30/40's and 1997. I'm just saying...

Tuesday, May 10, 2011  
Blogger Ian Dickerson said...


You're obviously entitled to your opinion and I'm obviously biased but one of the reasons that this has dragged on so long is because the guys behind it believe there is a place in the 21st century for a Saint who is true to the original character. There have been plenty of approaches from folks who want the Saint brand but don't want the character and we've managed to steer them all away.

Sure, it'll be updated, but it'll be as true to the original as we can make it. (And before you ask I'll be shooting down any reporter who calls this a remake of a 60s TV series...it's not, it's a "reimagining" of the original character).

Tuesday, May 10, 2011  
Blogger Robert said...

I have high hopes for this Saint project and Purefoy as Templar!

The fact that Burl is on board fills me with hope. He knows his Onions when it comes to The Saint. I have no doubt that Purefoy will be performing as a British Templar and the only Americanised parts will be the locations etc. Still, You could have a scene with Templar in his London Pad and you could film that in the American studio...and so on.

Monday, May 23, 2011  
Blogger hudson hawk said...

One thing about Templar was that he was an internationalist.....world traveler even when it was a more difficult task. London was his base of operations from which he prepared for his next jaunt. I trust he will stay that way....budget permitting.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011  
Blogger hudson hawk said...

Yesterday , the new James Bond novel by Jeffrey Deaver got a high profile opening in London. BSA motorcycles , classic British sports cars. British Royal Marines etc. What interested me was 007 has been rebooted in the book. Born in the Eighties , Gulf War Veteran , newly hired into the British spy works. I think this bodes well for the newly updated Simon Templar. New Century , a makeover is due. Onward to the newer Simon Templar.

Friday, May 27, 2011  
Blogger Derek said...

Oh no! Say it ain't so!!! James Pucefoy... sorry, Purefoy... to be THE SAINT? That's like having Val Kilmer play Simon Temp... oh, he did! BADLY! Or like having George Lazenby play James Bo... oh, he did! BADLY! Or like having Alfred Molina play Hercule Poi... oh, he did! BADLY! Or like having Matt Frewer play Sherlock Hol... oh, he did! BADLY! You get the picture - BAD casting, BAD idea... just plain BAD! He's too old, too ugly, too round, and too common to be Simon. He hasn't got that devil may care 'glint' in his eye, doesn't have that Saintly steel in his soul, and certainly doesn't have the joie de vivre, the Je ne sais quoi, the elan par excellence - and various other French sounding cliches! - or just the pure CLASS that is needed to portray what is, essentially, the Modern Day Robin Hood! If it ever goes ahead it will be a complete SHAMBLES! I just hope that Burl Barer doesn't get anywhere NEAR the script! But that is probably fait accompli! C'est la vie!

Thursday, June 09, 2011  
Blogger hudson hawk said...

Well Derek....that was a mouthful. I have really given thought as to your apprehensions. Well.....legend has it that a Scotsman who was best known at the time for the romantic lead in a movie called Darby O'Gill and the Little People for Disney was not up for taking on the role of 007. The upper crust accent , the knowledge of fine wine , a backbone of English steel. After all Cary Grant had turned down the role which was , in the early 60's every bodies idea of class. Especially in America. Well after a couple of weeks in the south of France with one of the producers at his home with a quick upper crust crash course and acting ability.....wala.....Bond....James Bond. Every generation has it's way of looking at a character. Taking on the "Nom de Guerre" of the Saint has I believe a set of expectations. With 46 being the new 35 , with Rome long under his belt , roles like The Philanthropist which made him better know in America those expectations may just rise from Purefoy. By the way don't worry about class....the reason I write from NYC area and not Rise England is that my ancestors left over a century ago. From what I know of them they didn't miss the rain or the class structure , after all Templar appears to be a self made Robin Hood.

Saturday, June 11, 2011  
Blogger TheDukeOfHunslet said...

If anyone wanted to catch any of Purefoy's recent work you could always look up the recent UK TV series 'Injustice' starring the said actor as a barrister (attorney for our US fans) who returns to work from a nervous break down and promptly guns down one of his old clients whom he found out after getting him off was in fact guilty. Already available on DVD. Quite good actually but I have to say... He's either going to make a rubbish Templar or he is a truely brilliant actor. He appeared to be more 'mad' than 'vengeful'. He looked so much like a your Richard O'Sullivan from 'Robins Nest' it was uncanny.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011  
Blogger saint mark said...

It looks like mr Purefoy will be no longer playing the honorable mr Templar. I guess we'll be waiting for the new face with the halo.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011  
Blogger hudson hawk said...

Well it has been all quiet on The Saint front.......perhaps no news is good news ...but......

Tuesday, August 16, 2011  
Blogger Roger v.d. Velde said...

Not having Purefoy play The Saint certainly is good news, it just wasn't him. It doesn't mean that the series wouldn't have been well-produced, well-acted etc, etc, but casting is so very important and, in some sense, has an element of chance about it: you have to be patient for the right person.
All the talk of how Sean Connery was elevated from bit-part actor to superstar makes me think that they ought to be looking at relative unknowns rather than knowns, if only to stop people saying things like: "what?! not him! he played so-and-so in what's-its-name... he's no Templar." Better to start with a fresh face and a clean slate if they want to do the rebooting thing.

Speaking of rebooting (if I may be allowed to ramble), it takes a certain amount of balance to get it right. In the attempt to avoid simply warming up hibernating characters - as in the failed revivification of The Avengers, Starsky & Hutch or what-have-you, producers can end up with simply a name which has lost all its essential characteristics. There's no getting away from the fact that both The Saint and 007 are heavily intertwined with a time a place and an era. It's just how it is and every alteration chips a little bit away. They don't really work to perfection when they are transported through time or have to contend with social change; it ends up a bit false as they try to plug-up all the awkward gaps with varying explanations. The glamour of a time when people dressed well looks out-of-place and costumey as they wrestle with the fact that dressing down is now unfortunately the norm (the fate of the Dalton-era James Bond).

If was only about making great TV there are a dozen other characters that could be brought to the screen to fit the times, no reboot necessary, no time-gaps to fill. Let us be honest, both Templar and Bond are now brands and this is why producers want to revive them, to tap into the ready-made customer base. On that note I should sum up by saying that they ought to make the Saint as authentic as possible - he can probably stand an era shift better than Bond - but trying to make him both classic and modern at the same time is a failure waiting to happen.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011  
Blogger Templar Saint said...

By the way ......Happy Birthday Roger Moore. You have been with me all my life from Ivanhoe when I was a young Kid to Templar to Bond and Beyond. As I said in another Blog you have been with us so long you have become a true cradle to grave actor. Thanks.

Friday, October 14, 2011  
Blogger stevewonder7138USA said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Wednesday, June 06, 2012  

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