Casting My Movie

Posted: June 27, 2013 in Uncategorized
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By Paul Gaszak, English Faculty

Last night while channel surfing, I came across Galaxy Quest. What a fabulous and underrated film. One of its strengths is the cast: Tim Allen (during the height of his 90s fame), Sigourney Weaver, Alan Rickman, Sam Rockwell, Tony Shalhoub, and a young Justin Long.

I especially love Alan Rickman. Many probably remember him as Hans Gruber in Die Hard, but I think first of his roles as Harry in Love Actually, Metatron in Dogma, and even Snape in the Harry Potter films. And I don’t even really like Harry Potter that much, which shows how much I love Alan Rickman.

While watching Galaxy Quest, I was brought back to an absurd train of thought that I’ve played with many times as a film-lover and writer: if I was casting a movie, who would be in my film?

The film I’m casting doesn’t have a script. Therefore, I can think of the process in reverse: rather than finding actors who fit characters, I can identify actors I would create roles for. (That’s what Seth Rogen and friends just did in This is the End. Other examples are Adam Sandler, Kevin Smith, and Wes Anderson who always have the same folks in their movies.) I’m not necessarily picking only the individuals whom I believe are the best actors/actresses, but rather the ones I enjoy the most.

In alphabetical order, after narrowing my list to 15, here is who I would cast in my untitled, unscripted, unmade movie:

Ben Affleck: He’s the lead in my favorite movie, Chasing Amy! He’s also recovered nicely from his Gigli days, especially after the success of Argo.

Don Cheadle: I first saw him during his one episode on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Oh, and he’s a great actor.

Johnny Depp: He’s perhaps a bit overexposed these days, and I think he’s on the verge of a historic flop with The Lone Ranger. Nonetheless, he is incredibly unique, and when on top of his game, he can work magic like crafting one of the most memorable characters in recent cinema history out of a movie based on a ride at Disney World.

Zooey Deschanel: If she’s on set, it increases my odds of meeting her. We’ll be married before the film hits theaters! Plus she brings quirky, cute, and charm to her roles.

Robert Downey Jr.: C’mon, he’s Iron Man!

Woody Harrelson: He’s in my movie based on Billy Hoyle and Tallahassee alone, but he has had so many great roles.

Neil Patrick Harris: Because he’s Legen-wait for it-DARY!

Anne Hathaway: She’s a wonderful actress. And I forgive her for marrying someone other than me.

Ian McKellen: How many people can successfully play a good wizard and a supervillain?

Edward Norton: I would watch him in anything and cast him in any role. He is a great actor. And I don’t care what anyone says: he was a way better Hulk than Mark Ruffalo.

Simon Pegg & Nick Frost: Loved them in Spaced, Shaun of the Dead, Hott Fuzz and can’t wait for their next movie The World’s End. One of the times I laughed hardest in my entire life was the first time I saw Nick Frost’s A-Team Dance on Spaced. (Out of context, it won’t be as funny – but watch it anyway.)

Alan Rickman: Like Norton, I’d watch him in anything.

Sam Rockwell: He has been great in a lot of movies, including Galaxy Quest. He brings such charm and humor to his roles. For a great example of why I enjoy his performances so much, check out the weapon demo scene in the much-maligned Iron Man 2. “If it were any smarter, it would write a book – a book that would make Ulysses look like it was written in crayon.”

Meryl Streep: Why? Because she’s Meryl F’n Streep.

Stanley Tucci: He’s always in supporting roles, and yet steals every scene he’s in.

That’s my cast. Who would you cast in your film? Let me know in the comments or on the Flaneur’s Turtle’s Facebook page.

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