An Oscar-winning actor could be the devilish villain in The Stand

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Aug 25, 2014, 11:10 AM EDT (Updated)

The new adaptation of Stephen King's The Stand may have just scored a huge star to play its villain.

If you're a fan of The Stand -- whether you came to the story via King's original novel or via the 1994 TV miniseries -- you've very likely never forgotten Randall Flagg, the central villain of the post-apocalyptic saga who's equal parts amoral wanderer and the Devil himself. Jamey Sheridan's (pictured above) charming-yet-terrifying portrayal of Flagg in the Stand miniseries 20 years ago remains one of the most memorable parts of the broadcast, and the character has haunted King's fiction, often in a very literal way, ever since.

So it's no surprise that Flagg is considered one of the most important casting decisions set before director Josh Boone (The Fault In Our Stars) and company. If Flagg is cast well, the rest of the film just might fall into place. So who is the new feature film adaptation of the novel focusing on for this vital role?

According to The Wrap, it's none other than Oscar-winning actor and Emmy nominee Matthew McConaughey.

Reports indicate that both Boone and King consider McConaughey a favorite for the flick. According to The Wrap, McConaughey was originally considered for the heroic role of Stu Redman -- a Texan who proves immune to the virus at the heart of the novel and ends up a leader among one of two major groups of survivors -- but has since been eyed for the Flagg character. The Wrap also notes that, if his schedule allows him to work on the film, McConaughey might get the chance to pick which role he'd rather play.

Either way, having McConaughey -- who's still riding high from his Oscar win for Dallas Buyers Club, could win an Emmy tonight for True Detective and still has Christopher Nolan's Interstellar to close out his year -- attached to the film would be a major coup for the production, which until recently was still struggling to nail down a director. Picturing the Oscar winner as the everyman hero Stu isn't hard, but picturing him as the devious, impossibly charming Flagg is positively thrilling. We'll see if he chooses either role, or if this is just another casting rumor.

(Via The Wrap)