Looks like Steven Spielberg has found the greatest gunter of them all, at long last. Tye Sheridan—most well known for his starring work in Terrence Malick’s Tree of Life and Jeff Nichol’s Mud—has reportedly been tapped to play Wade Watts, the protagonist in his adaptation of Ernest Cline‘s Ready Player One.
Nerdist has reached out for comment and confirmation from Warner Bros., but had yet to hear back at the time of publication.
But the news comes via a report from Deadline, who claims the seemingly neverending search for the film’s star has finally ended with Sheridan, who beat out scores of other actors to land the coveted role. Speculation about who would play the part has run rampant since the film was announced back in March 2015, but now it seems we may have an answer. Sheridan will star opposite Olivia Cooke, who plays Canadian blogger Sam, and Ben Mendelsohn, who is set to play Nolan Sorrento.
Not a bad gig to follow up your turn as the young Cyclops in Bryan Singer’s upcoming X-Men: Apocalypse, eh?
For those of you out there who haven’t been to OASIS, allow us to set the stage: Ready Player One is basically the story of a massive Easter Egg hunt in the year of 2044. With a world in near-ruins after a Great Recession has demolished the world economy, internet and gaming culture have joined forces and evolved into a huge multiplayer virtual reality game called OASIS, created by the mysterious James Halliday and Ogden Morrow of Gregarious Simulation Systems (GSS). After dying suddenly, Halliday sets the world on fire with a Willy Wonka-esque quest to find three keys hidden in the OASIS universe that unlock his fortune and controlling stock in GSS. Wade, Sam, and millions of other people give up everything in hopes of finding the three keys hidden in this virtual world, along with their proverbial golden ticket.
What do you think of the casting news? Let us know in the comments below!
Image Credit: Lionsgate
Alicia Lutes is Managing Editor of Nerdist. Find her on Twitter (@alicialutes).
And while you’re here, why not see why we think Steven Spielberg is the perfect person to direct Ready Player One: