The Who2 Blog

John Cusack IS Edgar Allan Poe: PHOTOS

Edgar Allan Poe gets the Hollywood treatment in The Raven, out this Friday.

And good for him. At that great author’s lunch club in Heaven, Poe can finally hand Sir Arthur Conan Doyle a glass of brandy and say:

“You may have Robert Downey playing your boy Holmes, but now I’ve got John Cusack playing ME. Take that, Doyley!”

Downey vs. Cusack — both smart actors, both dark, both reluctant stars. It’s a tie.

A photo of Alice Eve with John Cusack dressed as Edgar Allan Poe, at a masked ball

Also a tie on the distaff side, with Poe’s Alice Eve vs. Holmes’s Rachel McAdams. But Poe gets to kiss the girl while Doyle can only participate vicariously. And Holmes doesn’t really dig women anyway. Advantage: Poe.

A photo of John Cusack as Edgar Allan Poe, dressed in black, walking down a muddy street like a gunslinger (with no guy)

The real question is: can you buy Edgar Allan Poe as a gun-toting and black-clad stud-muffin, drawing down on a serial killer in Olde Baltimore?  He wasn’t exactly an intimidating figure in real life.

A photo of Edgar Allan Poe, looking scrawny in black, with deep-set eyes and major, major eye bags

“Unhand that woman, sir, or I will go to my room and write something distinctly creepy about you.”

(Or is that unfair? He did go to West Point, after all.)

A photo of John Cusack as Edgar Allan Poe, looking through stage ropes backstage at some kind of play

The Raven is a reimagining of Poe’s last days in Baltimore before his demise at the tender age of 40. In this version he battles a serial killer to the death. In real life, of course, he died of alcohol, brain congestion, cholera, rabies, drugs, heart disease, epilepsy, syphilis, meningeal inflammation, tuberculosis and suicide.

A photo of John Cusack holding a raven on his arm, dressed in 19th-century finery (Cusack, not the raven)

Bottom line: it’s John Cusack. We’ll be there. (If they promise it’s not too grisly.) 

See our biography of Edgar Allan Poe »

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