Thursday, January 8, 2009

Casting Sandman

I have a habit of casting any book I read in my head, even if I hate the book. I've always done it, and sometimes I get waaaay too into it and sit and think of who could play who. So I decided I would share my casting thoughts with whoever wants to know, and you can tell me how wrong I am or how right -- or offer up your own suggestions. Whatevs.

So, below I've cast Neil Gaiman's The Sandman, because it is one of my favorite books (comic or otherwise). I've cast the seven brothers and sisters of The Endless and then a sampling of my favorite characters (I wouldve' done the entire series, but I decided sitting at my computer all night might be unhealthy). For those of you who aren't familiar with the story, please, go read it.

I tried to think a little outside of the box and also listed my back-up choices for fun. So please, enjoy.

The Sandman
Billy Crudup
I think whoever might play lead character Morpheus will have a really tough job. However, what I've seen of Crudup in Watchmen looks like he could have the goods. He's chiseled, and brooding, and is seems like he can pull off that whole glowy, god-like being thing.
Runners Up:


Jennifer Carpenter
Okay, she's kind of annoying on Dexter, but I think Jennifer did a pretty decent job in Quarantine. And she totally looks the part, which is kinda freaky.
Runner Up:
Kat Dennings

Milla Jovovich
I think the obvious choice for Desire is Tilda Swindon since she's Hollywood's leading androgynous actor. But I love Milla, and I think she has just the right level of androgyny, while also being super hot.

Runner Up:
David Bowie

Lizzy Caplan
She'd definitely either need massive prosthetics or a lot of CGI, but between Mean Girls and Cloverfield, Lizzy's shown a lot of range. I think her face shape is just soft enough and her eyes are dark enough that the base of Despair's depressing mood is there.

Runner Up:
Kathy Bates

Josh Brolin
Okay, you never see his face, so almost any credible actor could play him. So I went on chins. Brolin's chin can totally pull off the brooding authority needed. You know I'm right.

Runner Up:
Jim Sturgess

Alan Tudyk
I absolutely love Tudyk! He's fantastic and should be in more stuff. And Destruction is supposed to be a big dude, but he could wear a body suit or bulk up or something. The main thing to me is Destruction's hearty smile and laugh and welcoming demeanor. I think he's perfect.

Anna Faris
I've never really seen her in a serious role, but Anna's got the fearlessness that whoever would play Delirium's bonkers personality would need. I think she would bring something completely out of the blue to the role, while also being totally loveable.

Runner Up:
Evanna Lynch

Abel and Cain
John C. Reilly and Christopher Walken
The great thing about these two is that Abel's a total coward and Cain is a complete asshole, but you love both of them completely. I think Reilly would make a perfect bumbling softie Abel who carries around a baby gargoyle, and Walken is totally the douchebag Cain who repeatedly murders his little brother, but refuses to let anyone else do so. Hell, I just want to see the two of them in a movie together.

Runners Up:
Nick Frost and Simon Pegg

The Corinthian
Timothy Olyphant
I love Olyphant and I'm not even sure if he's a good actor or not. But he's so sassy and pointy. Which is perfect for the Corinthian -- a smooth-talking, cool, murderous nightmare on the loose.

Runner Up:
Aaron Eckhart

Cillian Murphy
Lucifer is just as evil in The Sandman as you might imagine him to be, but he's totally level-headed and actually quite cool. Murphy has blown me away ever since I saw 28 Days Later and I think he can do anything. And he's got that whole Jesus fit thing going on.

Runner Up:
Heath Ledger
(if only...)

Rose Walker
Evan Rachel Wood
Everytime Rose shows up in the book, she looks totally different, but still very interesting-looking. Wood is definitely that kind of actress; she's got a lot of range, but keeps that girl-next-door quality, which makes her likable.

Runner Up:
Jewel Staite

Peter Sarsgaard
I mean, he's no Keanu Reeves, but I think Peter could pull it off. I always forget about him because he's so good at being a character-actor, but he's got those heavy eyes and scratchy voice that just oozes Constantine to me.

Runner Up:
Ewan McGregor

Amanda Seyfried

The first time I read Sandman, I hated Thessaly. After I finished it, and read it again, she became my favorite character. So choosing her was tough for me. But Seyfried is fantastic as a cute conniver, so I totally think she could play a nerdy, self-centered, 800-year-old witch who looks 22.

Runner Up:
Thora Birch

Jackie Earle Haley
I had no idea who Jackie was until I saw Little Children, which was an interesting way to learn about an actor. But he seems like a fantastic character actor, and he has a unique look, so I think he could pull off the libraian of a metaphysical realm kinda thing.

Runner Up:
Alan Cumming

Matthew the Raven
Paul Giamatti
For Matthew, it's all in the voice, and if you had to have a raven follow you around and talk to you, wouldn't you want it to be Paul Giamatti?

Runner Up:
Tom Hanks

Merv Pumpkinhead

Ben Affleck
Again, probably a voice-over character. But Merv is essentially a wise-cracking, loud-mouthed grounds-keeper. For some reason that screams Ben Affleck to me. I think he's also got an odd sense of humor that would translate well for the character.

Runner Up:
Will Arnett

Colin Firth
A British everyman who happens to get to live forever. He goes from bumbling drunkard to wise entrepenuer. It's hard to find actors who can retain that sense of being no-one once they start to get famous, but Firth has done it well. In a good way.

Runner Up:
Anthony Head

Joe Anderson
Daniel is basically the light, new version of Dream. I loved Anderson in Across the Universe, and he had a fantastic emotional range that I think would be necessary to play Daniel. It's a really odd character who isn't around for long in The Sandman, but I think Joe would make it count.

The Kindly Ones
Laura Harris, Melanie Lynskey, Frances McDormand
The Kindly Ones are also known as the Fates, so it's 3 witches of various stages of life: maiden, mother and crone. I picked Harris because of her damsel in distress character on Dead Like Me, Lynskey because she always looks so sweet and motherly, and McDormand because she's awesome and I love it when she does crazy-shit characters.

So, those are my thoughts. I think it would be a rocktacular cast. Feel free to give your opinions. I want to hear them!


  1. GREAT call on Billy Crudup! He would totally be perfect for a very difficult-to-cast part.

    Actually I love just about all your picks, especially Josh Brolin, Anna Faris, and the Reilly/Walken combo.

    I'd definitely go with Eric Dane as my first pick for Delirium though, despite Jim Gibbons being a pretty rad pick as well.

  2. I gotta say, I think Jim Gibbons is a marvelous choice!

  3. This is absolutely fantastic.

  4. lucifer looks like david bowie. david bowie should be lucifer

  5. this is kinda amazing. send it to neil gaiman :)

  6. Hmm... Seems to me that you like Joss Whedon... At least a little. Nice choices. :)

  7. This'd be a fantastic cast for a Sandman movie. :O

  8. Billy Crudup as Dream couldn't be more wrong. Dream should be gaunt and ethereal looking. Someone like Adrien Brody would be a more obvious choice physically, or Orlando Bloom if he wasn't such a terrible actor.

  9. Morpheus is the only good one. Mostly cause the other version of this list i saw had jonny depp Dream, fuck that noise, i'm fucking sick of that fag. But Deb??? weak, way to cry-ie of a stupid bitch, and too tall. And Hob? the fucking guy from buffy??? why, cause he's conveniently british? weak... Ben Assfleck? and i like will arnet, but merv? really? shat the bed the mathew as well. Morning Stars pretty weak too, too sniveling satin is big an proud and fucking physical striking. destruction might be the worst... never mind Del is.

    These lists are dumb cause the movie would be way better with a lesser known crowd. All these actors are going bring with them too much from other movies. I would hold open casting if it was my call.

  10. Great cast, really well chosen =)

    Thank you for not putting Johnny Depp for Dream, I'd prefer no movie at all =P

  11. Greg, you're an idiot.

    on topic: for the most part,runners up seem to be better picks than the first choices.

    I will say that I don't think any of the choices for Dream or Death are top tier choices. Dream would be better off with David Tennant, IMO, and Death should be Emma Stone.