Mark Rylance will play four versions of Satan in Terrence Malick’s new movie

Last Updated on August 2, 2021

mark rylance, satan, terrence malick

When you think Satan, you think pointy tail, a pitchfork, a lot of red, maybe some hooves, and maybe even a sharp goatee. The visual that may not come to mind is that of Oscar winner Mark Rylance, the man who literally lent his voice to a big and friendly giant. However, you better get used to picturing Rylance as the Devil himself, because he’s signed on to play not one, not two, but four different versions of Beelzebub for the new movie by Terrence Malick.


The director is getting some his best reviews in years with his new movie A HIDDEN LIFE, and already he’s hard at work getting his next feature up and running. Titled THE LAST PLANET, the movie will follow the life of Jesus Christ through a series of parables (Malick!) with Géza Röhrig (SON OF SAUL) playing Christ and Matthias Schoenaerts (RED SPARROW, THE MUSTANG) set to play St. Peter. Rylance revealed to The Guardian that he will be playing four different takes on Satan, initially thinking he was just set to play one version.

“Terry wrote four versions of the character of Satan, and I thought I would play only one. But I heard I was going to play all four. One of them must have been a woman at some point, but it was when he asked me to grow a beard that I realized I wasn’t going to do it that way.


Working primarily in theater, Rylance became a recognized name after his stirring performance in Steven Spielberg’s BRIDGE OF SPIES, which won him his Oscar. Since then he’s only had a few more film credits to his name, doing more Spielberg (BFG, READY PLAYER ONE) and Christopher Nolan’s DUNKIRK. He seems excited to take on the challenge of the many Satans, even if he expressed slight nervousness about working a director like Malick.

“I’m very happy to act for Terrence Malick, but I’m intrigued, because I hear he talks to you all the time. And coming from the theatre, I’m not used to the director yelling at me while I act or tell me what to do. But his films always intrigued me.”

Rylance is an exceptional actor, so watching him bring to life four Satans sounds fascinating and suitably badass. He hints one will be bearded, but maybe one will be some kind of animal. Oh, maybe he will get to wear a long, red robe, or even have some goat hooves! This is a Malick movie so maybe I'm envisioning something too fun here, but how can you not? What, is his Satan just going to wear four different suits each time? Come on, let Rylance get a litte sinister and weird. 

A HIDDEN LIFE is in theaters December 13, and read our review here!

Source: The Guardian

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