Casting the movie!

IwishI knew

I’m back because I couldn’t get this book out of my head. And as of now, I’ve had a couple beers, and am therefore taking this opportunity to be the casting director of Handbook for Mortals.

Zade: Early 20’s. Blonde hair dyed “a multitude of fun colors” and “perfectly cut bangs.” Pretty. Beautiful, even. Hourglass figure, but not too skinny: she does NOT have a thigh gap. Round face. 5’9″. T H I C C.

Basically, this: sarempink

But let’s be honest: Sarem is a 35-year-old woman who’s most notable role has been “Roxie” in “Trailer Park Shark.” No one in their right mind would cast a highly maligned unknown for a part in a controversial movie (unless it’s an independent art film, which, let’s be real, Handbook is not.)

No, we need a celebrity. Someone who can appeal to 20-somethings, someone who can believably portray someone around whom the world revolves, and has experience being in the middle of tedious love triangles. Someone exactly 5’9″, and slender, if not supermodel-skinny. She does NOT have a thigh gap.

mischabartonZade

For these reasons, Mischa Barton is perfect for the role. When was on The O.C, her character was a similar black hole with whom nearly every male characterwas obsessed. Furthermore, I think she could bring some darkness to Zade. She’s 31, yes, but I believe that this will allow her to also allow her to play Dela more believably, and unlike Sarem, she’s actually well known. Also, I think she could be convinced to act in Handbook, as she does plenty of smaller films these days.

Charles Spellman: As Jenny Trout pointed out, Charles is definitely based on David Copperfield:

davidcopperfield

He’s older, but still handsome, and radiates charisma. He has a thing for younger women, but we later find out that he is deeply emotionally damaged. Jenny Trout also noted Ty Burrell’s  resemblance to Copperfield. Now, this would make his an excellent candidate for the role, but I honestly think that there’s another man in Hollywood who fits the bill:

charliesheen

That’s right: Charlie Sheen.

Think about it. He’s been famous since the 80’s. If you think think David Copperfield is handsome, you might think Charlie Sheen is too. For all his problems, he is certainly charismatic (I think? I’ve only seen him in Wall Street). Charlie Sheen, who is 52, is dating a 26-year-old as of the writing of this post. He, like Charles Spellman, has had substance abuse issues, and I think he could really bring Spellman to life, and imbue him with some of the creepitude that makes the character even a little bit interesting.

Mac: Sandy-brownish hair, hazel eyes. At least 6 feet tall, if not more so. Muscular, but not too much. He’s intense, and hides his sensitivity with sarcasm.

Also, he’s supposed to be of an age with Thomas Ian Nichols, who is 37. Even though canonically he’s 29. So realistically he can be anywhere from 29-40.

With that in mind, I cast:

joshuajackson2

Joshua Jackson.

I’ve only seen Jackson’s work in Fringe, but that’s essentially the part he plays there. We also know that Lani Sarem loved him as Pacey in Dawson’s Creek (ThreeGeeks Interview, 17:29). And according to the Dawson’s Creek Wiki,   Mac’s characterization is also quite similar to Pacey’s.

Jackson: “Tall, dark, and Handsome.” Extraverted lady’s man, flirtatious and funny. Sings and plays guitar. Probably Zade’s age? Sparkly eyes.

Now, the obvious man for this part is Jackson Rathbone, as we are almost certain that this was who Sarem had in mind. But this cast looks awfully white, doesn’t it? Fortunately, I know an actor who has all of Jackson’s charm and charisma, is musically talented, and can make the ladies swoon with ease. This isn’t simply a diversity cast, though.

And for this one, I’m going to need to use video, because Vincent Rodriguez III is so perfect for this role.

(I finally learned how to embed youtube videos. Hooray! Also, go watch Crazy Ex-Girlfriend right now because it is everything).

Now, I’m not sure if Charlie Sheen, who is an old, racist, sexist, awful white dude, would ever shape-shift into an Asian man, but there’s no way the incest sub-plot will be in the film, so that doesn’t matter.

Sofia: Sofia is “undeniably beautiful.” That’s pretty much all the physical description we get of her. She’s defensive and insecure, though, and opens up to Zade the minute Zade reaches out. She also has a beautiufl singing voice. For this role, we need someone who can play mean, but also vulnerable. I also get the feeling that she has dark hair, on account of Zade being blonde.

This one has honestly stumped me. My first instinct was Megan Fox, but I don’t know if she can sing. I thought about Demi Lovato, but I feel like Sofia’s meant to be quite short and stick thin (so that Zade’s tallness and relative curviness can be portrayed as superior).

But who’s an actress-turned-powerhouse-vocalist who’s incredibly petite, a sex symbol to thousands of men (despite her arguably childlike appearance), and is known for being a bit of a diva?

arianagrandesofia

Ariana Grande. Now, I’m skepical as to whether she would sign on for this nothing movie, but these are reach goals.

Mel: Due to the ambiguous number of Mels, there has been some speculation that Scary Spice and Sporty Spice both work on the Charles Spellman Show. However, I’m pretty sure there’s only one Mel. Like Sofia, though, Mel’s only physical description is “hot.” And her only other characterization is that she’s a mean, sexually liberated woman.Also, as commenter DoveCG has pointed out,  it could be that the unnamed redheaded woman described in Chapter 2 is Mel, I’ll assume she’s a redhead. And so, I cast Bella Thorne as Mel

bellasofia

She’s known as something of a wild child, and has already played a mean girl role in The DUFF (a film that was also based on a really shitty novel).

Zeb: All we know of Zeb is that he’s about Charles’ age and has red hair, and that Zade thinks he’s sinister to the point that he even looks evil. Since Zeb is easily one of the most interesting characters I think it’s important that we get an actor who’s really compelling.

In short, I think that  Jackie Earle Haley is the man for this role. Just put him back into his Watchman outfit, and let him glower around the set as much as he wants:

rorsachZeb

He’s perfect.

Riley:

I would say Philip Haldiman, the actor who played Denny in the Room:

dennyriley

But no. This is him now:

dennyoldman

So I’m actually going to cast him as Drew. But also, I think we can probably just edit in clips of Denny circa 2003, because I don’t think there’s anyone better for the role.

That’s all I’ve got for tonight.

Oh, and obviously Thomas Ian Nichols plays Tad.

7 thoughts on “Casting the movie!

  1. It’s just too much fun, isn’t it?! 😄

    Is that really LS in the pink dress? She’s more attractive there than in her other images. Probably because she looks more casual and interesting. Mischa Barton kinda scares me a bit with that intensity, but in retrospect, that’s actually perfect for Zade. Let’s be honest… if Zade thought Lamborghini Girl was kinda weird, and she’s also the real deal, then Zade probably is as well.

    Oh, man! I didn’t think David Copperfield was that hot, but that picture of Charlie Sheen is totally sploosh! I’m not sure why… Something about the hair and the expressions. Copperfield wants to sell you something; Sheen just wants your respect. Would it be weird to have the scene where Sofia mentions Charlie though? Mr. Sheen might have to shake his head over that little tidbit. 😜

    Vincent Rodriguez III is way too perfect. Headcanon accepted! (Also, the Jackson disguise could’ve been thought up by Zeb, who might have any reason for choosing an Asian guy. Maybe he asked Cam about some boy bands for inspiration, and then Cam showed Zeb some J-Pop singers? Who would be Cam btw? I’ve come up with an unusual PoC for my fanfic, but my idea probably isn’t the best… )

    Ariana Grande sounds fantastic, although I haven’t heard her sing. (I’m woefully bad at following celebrities though, regardless of why they’re famous.) I’m pretty sure Sofia was mentioned as having brown curls when Zade calls Spellman by the Charlie nickname, so that sounds spot on. I hadn’t considered her being petite as well, but that sounds like a good contrast, and of course having all of the hair colors for the three female performers seems appropriate. Plus, it kinda makes sense if Charles goes for younger women, that he might want some girliness and give off a weird vibe. Then people would be happier to see him dump poor Sofia for an older woman, I guess. 😄

    Not sure how I feel about Bella Thorne for Mel, but then I’d probably change my mind if she had a short hairstyle like our unnamed redhead does. She’s also supposed to be petite and pixie-like; is Bella smoll too?

    Everyone else is pretty awesome. Especially Jackie Earle Haley as Zeb, the more that I look at him, and Danny from the Room just spliced in is pretty lol.

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  2. Is that really LS in the pink dress? She’s more attractive there than in her other images.
    Yep; it’s the most recent picture on her instagram. LS isn’t unattractive, and she looks cute in quite a few photos.

    For Mischa, I was mostly thinking about her role on The O.C. where 100% of her drama was generated by not getting along with her mother and being so beautiful that everyone was in love with her. Also her height/body type works for Zade.

    As for C.S. as C.S, I mostly just think that a coked-out Charles would be so much fun to watch.

    I googled Bella Thorne’s height and she’s like 5’8″. I don’t know of many young actresses who are generically hot who can play bitchy (I no longer watch teen dramas), so I only know about Bella Thorne because she’s kind of a on social media maybe? I honestly don’t know.

    I thought about casting Zayn Malik as Cam, because he’s pretty, but then I realized his forehead’s way too small. All the other really pretty dudes I can think of all still look fairly masculine, and tend to have pretty square jaws. My original thought for him was Jack Falahee (Connor on How to Get Away With Murder)

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  3. Yep; it’s the most recent picture on her instagram. LS isn’t unattractive, and she looks cute in quite a few photos.

    Fair enough. I’m one of those weirdos who doesn’t usually pay attention to instagram, facebook, or twitter unless someone else shows me a thing, or I found a link from another website that I visit on a regular basis.

    For Mischa, I was mostly thinking about her role on The O.C. where 100% of her drama was generated by not getting along with her mother and being so beautiful that everyone was in love with her. Also her height/body type works for Zade.

    I’ve never watched that show, but she sounds perfect. 👌

    As for C.S. as C.S, I mostly just think that a coked-out Charles would be so much fun to watch.

    That’s what this book was missing! A coked out Charles and everyone else reacting to him. 😀

    Or hell, just more Charles in general, since he’s probably the most interesting after Zeb. He has the most character arcs, after all.

    I googled Bella Thorne’s height and she’s like 5’8″. I don’t know of many young actresses who are generically hot who can play bitchy (I no longer watch teen dramas), so I only know about Bella Thorne because she’s kind of a on social media maybe? I honestly don’t know.

    Eh, I don’t know either. Mel is barely in the story anyway, and the ability to fill the role is more important than descriptive accuracy, so if Ms. Thorne can handle it, that’s good enough for me. There could be better choices, but I wouldn’t even know where to begin searching. I’m terrible at remembering actor/actress names, unless they’re super big names and everyone knows them.

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  4. I just realized something, btw. I’m not angry at Lani Sarem for writing a crappy book and failing to launch a franchise or get picked up for a movie deal. I’m angry because I think she’s going to learn the wrong lessons; she’s going to assume that she needs to cheat better, judging from that last article written about her. It’s kind of like seeing Dick Dastardly stop to cheat when he’s already in the lead. (I mean, maybe she wasn’t in the lead exactly, but she has some connections and she somehow got people excited enough to publish this monstrosity.)

    And I’m kind of in love with the hilariously broad potential of her shitty, shitty novel so it’s infuriating to think it’ll never get better. I kind of wish I could meet her at a convention or something and beg her to try harder, but it would probably be a wasted effort. I think I just need to console myself with my own writing. There’s no way to force someone else to do the right thing. A horse to water and all that. 😦

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  5. The only reason I feel morally OK doing this blog is that LS did some really shady shit to promote her (objectively awful) book. The only reason I haven’t publicly sporked more stuff is that it feels really mean. The only reason anyone even knows about this shitty novel and has lied about and manipulated sales numbers, so I feel completely comfortable mocking it.

    Writing your own version is really the best thing you can do at this point. Creative inspiration is invaluable, and if you can make something cool out Sarem’s awful book, then you should by all means do it.

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  6. The only reason I feel morally OK doing this blog is that LS did some really shady shit to promote her (objectively awful) book. The only reason I haven’t publicly sporked more stuff is that it feels really mean. The only reason anyone even knows about this shitty novel and has lied about and manipulated sales numbers, so I feel completely comfortable mocking it.

    Yeah, it feels like a little bit of justice for such a shoddy product. Plus, it’s just so easy to dissect this thing and it’s really instructive too. It’s not really cruel if at least one person learned something through the various discussions here and on Jenny Trout’s blog. Maybe it would hurt Lani Sarem’s feelings, but I’d like to think we’re not really attacking her personally (at least not that often) as much as we’re giving her novel some much needed critical analysis. 🙂

    Besides, there’s no shame in taking a risk and failing, but she set herself up for failure from the start and then she put that failure out for public consumption.

    Writing your own version is really the best thing you can do at this point. Creative inspiration is invaluable, and if you can make something cool out Sarem’s awful book, then you should by all means do it.

    Oh yeah, definitely! It’s pretty cathartic. I’m close to the end too, which makes me happy. Not sure how many more pages are left, especially since I decided to add in a few of the newer ideas that cropped up recently. (And then after that, two short explicit sequels: Cameron/Zeb and then Charles/Zade… ’cause I’m evil.) Revising the whole book would be tedious for me, and I’ve chosen a version where the original story is basically what actually happens, right down to Zade’s unreliable narration. I’ve just given it some more depth while getting in numerous digs at the novel itself. I’ll find a beta reader somewhere so I can post it, but I won’t bother getting a second look at the porn because no one will read those anyway. 😄

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  7. I adore Joshua Jackson, that man oozes charm and can be likable in anything. I would want so much better for him than this project but I can’t argue that he wouldn’t be great because he can be great and have sexual chemistry with anyone.

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