‘The Jesus Rolls’: A Spinoff About ‘The Big Lebowski’s Worst Character (10 We Would Rather See)
The Jesus Rolls is a spinoff about the worst character from the 1998 Coen brothers classic. This month saw The Jesus Rolls trailer, starring John Turturro as Jesus Quintana, hit the internet. The Big Lebowski spinoff, which also serves as a remake of the 1974 French film, Going Places, will release in theaters later this month. While we salute Turturro for writing and directing the film himself, we do not approach this Coen-less venture without trepidation.
Clarification: there are no bad characters featured in The Big Lebowski but Jesus Quintana is the worst—a deplorable, bowling ball-licking sex offender who exposes himself to 8-year-olds. Maybe The Jesus Rolls will paint the character in a more flattering light (early reviews say otherwise) but for now, well, you know, that’s just, like, our opinion, man. There are a ton of other characters from The Big Lebowski, a film that is infinitely quotable and has inspired an entire White Russian-wielding religion, that we find more appealing. That said, here are a handful of other characters seen in The Big Lebowski who could’ve laced up some bowling shoes and delivered a proper spinoff because unfortunately, the Dude did not abide.
Cover Photo: Screen Media Films
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Smokey (Jimmie Dale Gilmore)
The Southern Cal Bowling League's native pacifistic, friend of the Dude, and Vietnam War critic. What does this intriguing fella have to say when Walter isn't pointing a gun at his head? We'd love to find out.
The Big Lebowski (David Huddleston) and Brandt (Philip Seymour Hoffman)
Unfortunately, both David Huddleston and Philip Seymour Hoffman have since passed. In honor of the characters they portrayed, the wheelchair-bound multi-millionaire and his delightful assistant, a prequel could be made about the former's rise to power and subsequent relationship with the latter. We mean, getting a photo with Nancy Reagan is "pretty good."
Marty aka the Landlord (Jack Kehler)
There'a a theory out there that the Dude's landlord, Marty, is actually the same Marty Ackerman who went on vacation with Walter's ex-wife Cynthia. Upon further investigation, new shit has come to light: the landlord's last name is Randahl (as seen in the brochure during the dance scene in which the Dude goes over and gives him notes). Regardless, there aren't enough shy landlords in this world—it's something we need to see more of.
Larry Sellers (Jesse Flanagan)
If you don't remember, Larry is the kid who the Dude and Walter assume stole the Dude's car and can't write papers. The character never speaks in The Big Lebowski. Perhaps a short, silent film depicting Larry committing crimes and struggling to form a sentence would be entertaining.
The Nihilists (Peter Stormare, Flea, Torsten Voges)
"No funny schtuff." Before Uli Kunkel (aka Karl Hungus), Dieter, and Franz tried to scam Jeffrey Lebowski and face off against the Dude, they were part of a band called Autobahn in the 1970s. How about some meaningless techno-pop?
Da Fino (Jon Polito)
The private investigator who follows the Dude after being hired by Bunny Lebowski (aka Fawn Knutsen's parents). Who could imagine Da Fino continuing his work for families like the Knutsens, searching the country for lost girls?
Maude Lebowski (Julianne Moore)
The daughter of the Big Lebowski and her lover, Knox Harrington (David Thewlis), clearly have a sea of untold exploits. Life through the eyes of one Maude Lebowski is no doubt a unique one, especially considering the fact that, following the events of The Big Lebowski, she has most likely given birth to a little dude.
Jackie Treehorn (Ben Gazzara) and his thugs (Philip Moon, Mark Pellegrino)
While he may not have the Dude sold (who still prefers to do things the old-fashioned way), Jackie Treehorn has us intrigued. The actor who portrayed Treehorn is no longer with us but there may be a story worth telling revolving around the pornographer and loan shark’s origins, like all of those tales leading up to that fateful day when his thugs soiled the rug that really tied the room together.
The Stranger (Sam Elliott)
There might be nothing more soothing or empowering in this world than the voice of one Sam Elliott. As a narrator, there’s no one better; as a mustache, he is inferior to none. Putting him on the outskirts of any story elevates it. Imagine the lives that could be narrated! Imagine the endless void of masculine possibilities!
Walter Sobchak (John Goodman)
Second to the Dude, Vietnam War vet and avid bowler (understatement), Walter is easily The Big Lebowski’s best character. He does not roll on Shabbos and, despite telling him to shut up on numerous occasions, has great affection for Theodore Donald "Donny" Kerabatsos (Steve Buscemi). A Walter-centric spinoff can go one of two ways: a war epic that shows Walter in Vietnam watching his buddies perish, or him running his security shop, Sobchak Security, following the events of The Big Lebowski. Whatever the creative decision may be, this is a role John Goodman should return to in the near future.