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Casting the TV show/Film of your novel

Phyrebrat

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Do you find it helps you?

I've said in the LonChrons that if my novel ever got published and made into a series or flm, I'd want David Lynch to produce/direct it. I wouldn't mind what he did with the story.

But I was thinking of a recent thread here about the structure of a story and when you struggle. It made me realise how often I go to my characters to solve a troublesome plot problem, and in particular how I see that character. I only have a few cast in my fantasy film adaptation which has a large cast, because they're the characters that have helped me get out of sinkholes, but having a pre-made actor (or even a character they've played) slip into voice for my WIP, is really helpful.

For example:

Polly Walker: The abbess of St Pritchetts (Because of her character Sister Clarice from Caprica)
Ned Dennehy: Nestor, Earl Greville (Because of his character Patrick Fitzgerald in Netflix's wonderful Glitch)
Eric Stoltz: Abbot Firmin of Cranbowen Priory (Because ERIC STOLTZ!)
Aiden Turner: Josiah Tanner (Poldark)
Ricky Whittle: Lazaro Rocha (Shadow Moon in American Gods)

What are yours?

pH
 

Phyrebrat

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I can’t visualise people so no good for me im afraid. But I do still want an Abendau Rock Opera by Muse :)
I saw a Muse T-shirt in Frankfurt yesterday and thought of you, but it was 35Euros.

But, now you've made me remember that I want John Carpenter to remix his The Fog soundtrack for my WIP movie ;)

Because yeah, that would totally happen. :D

pH
 

Mouse

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Yeah I do, if I need a particular voice in my head. She's not well known, but Charlie Covell voices Allery from Locke & Co in my head for me. And Jorgie Porter voices Esme (also L&C) for two reasons - one, the character's a ditz and Jorgie played ditzy Theresa McQueen in Hollyoaks, and two I love her.

You know Ambrose in TBM is Ben Barnes. :D

edit to make the answer more interesting/relevant: Charlie Covell has a habit of little pauses in her speech pattern and she has an expressive forehead (!) which fits Allery well. I found Allery quite difficult to voice myself so that's why I borrowed Charlie's voice when writing her.
 
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OHB

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I do cast my novels. Part of it is because I started out wanting to be a screenwriter and later decided to convert my script ideas into novels, but it also helps me nail down the voices of the characters.

For my current WIP, I would want Amy Hoggart from "Full Frontal" (she's the best part of that show), Anthony LaPaglia because he was Jack on "Without a Trace," Marie Stillin because of her role as High Chancellor Travell of the Tollan on "Stargate SG-1," and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje because he was Eko on "Lost."
 

Cathbad

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I keep seeing Heath Ledger a my dragon Darganau's human form personage.

That can no longer be. :(
 

-K2-

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I'm vain... many/most of the characters in my stories are based off of me at some stage in my life. Some slight twisting of my name, my look at various ages, demeanor, attitudes, beliefs, experiences, etc. etc.. So clearly the protagonist would have to be me (although, I speak and act as well as I sing :eek:(n)... In my own defense, I dance like a drunken rhino. So it's not all bad). Romantic story interests and other characters, well, I'll just keep them to myself ;)

K2
 

The Big Peat

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I've pretty much never done casting for all sorts of reasons, but there is an exception and that is I am fairly sure the MC in Gumshoe Paladin would be best played by a younger Liam Neeson.
 

L.L.Lotte

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It would be a bit hard to cast the heroine of my story.... she kind of doesn't have one singular look, body, face, whatever... hence the name of my book.

But some other characters that have appearances more stuck in stone, sure, I cast them. It helps with developing the image of their character, gives them a better identity.
 

Phyrebrat

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To clarify I’m not talking about the wish-fulfilment of ‘I’d like so-and-so to play so-and-so in my story,’ although that’s interesting in itself.

Just that with troublesome characters it has often helped me visualise the characters those I mentioned have played, and divine what they might do to help me out of a spot of bother in my wip. It’s been a helpful writing strategy.

My own thought is we’re trying to create unique characters of our own so I don’t think of copying existing personalities/characters but use that as a problem solver where necessary.

I prob muddled the issue mentioning Eric Stoltz and David Lynch in a more fantasy-fulfilment way. :D

But it’s interesting hearing who you see as your MC etc, too!! It’s also interesting to see the difference in your readers’ take in comparison to yours. I’ve had one of my characters seen as Jim Broadbent which was enlightening in reflecting on how I’d written him.

Also the ‘personality’ often evolves. For example the Nestor character reminded me as bit of a conflation of Dickens characters, particularly Samuel Pickwick. That was troublesome because Pickwick is such a passive character. Luckily Nestor (my character) has things happen to him and his meltdown is his storyline so it wasn’t too far to channel what Pickwick might react.

Funnily enough @Mouse I was thinking about Ambrose when I started this thread ;)

pH
 

Dan Jones

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I saw a Muse T-shirt in Frankfurt yesterday and thought of you, but it was 35Euros.
Yeah, Jo. He's not made of money, you know.

But, now you've made me remember that I want John Carpenter to remix his The Fog soundtrack for my WIP movie ;)
Yes! Complete with fishhooks being used as impromptu percussion.
I am fairly sure the MC in Gumshoe Paladin would be best played by a younger Liam Neeson.
Nope. Wrong. Sam Elliott is Ser Albric. And as I've already said, Sia is Natalia Tena. Do you not know your characters at all? ;)

52546


I never really thought about casting that much, but I always thought that Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje would make a fabulous Joseph Johnson in the movie or miniseries of Man O'War. And maybe Art Malik as Dhiraj.

It's a fun game but not very useful as I think it can direct the writer's hand in a way that may be too prescriptive (and unrealistic).
 

Toby Frost

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I don't do this to a large extent, but I do often find myself thinking that such and such character is "that sort of person", and some actors do tend to always get cast as a certain sort of guy. Quite often I'll work from a couple of sources, and hopefully the result won't be too obviously based on either.
 

The Big Peat

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I do have a long list of historical, mythical and fictional characters that echo/mirror my main characters that I do occasionally use to a) make sure my conception of the character is on track b) grab small details from, which I think might be more what pB was talking about. I also do it in terms of duos as well.

Dan/HB - Elliott would work, particularly his road house-esque version, but he's not as good.

Also I've just realised I played rugby with a guy who was/is the drummer for Natalie Tena's band; he was far too good for the level and too busy to commit. Now I know why. And you're comple
 

Toby Frost

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I think the way that the real world and/or other sources overlap with the creative process is really interesting. In the WIP, there's a minor villain called Catherine. I know that she's either based on a real person (in temperament, as she's a wizened undead horror) or on the acting style of a real actress. Unfortunately, I've completely forgotten who I was thinking of when I wrote her. So, in editing, I'm seeing her "fresh", in that she's not related to anything else. And, oddly, she doesn't remind me of anyone.
 

The Big Peat

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I think the way that the real world and/or other sources overlap with the creative process is really interesting. In the WIP, there's a minor villain called Catherine. I know that she's either based on a real person (in temperament, as she's a wizened undead horror) or on the acting style of a real actress. Unfortunately, I've completely forgotten who I was thinking of when I wrote her. So, in editing, I'm seeing her "fresh", in that she's not related to anything else. And, oddly, she doesn't remind me of anyone.
That's an interesting tangent in its own right - what do you remember of your process? I know there's some decisions that I took where I can no longer remember when it happened. I also have a big document full of potential names, most of which I harvested from various sources that I can no longer remember.
 

Toby Frost

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Very little, unfortunately! The only thing I can remember is feeling a need for a female villain who was physically active, rather than a master-criminal type who directs minions. For the fantasy (and a fair amount of Space Captain Smith too) I’ve nicked stuff from history, but the only very physical female characters from history I can recall are heroic: SOE agents, Joan of Arc etc. Quite often, I find that I only need one very small real-world item – the way someone smiles, for instance – as a peg on which to hang a character, in that the character can be built up from that one action or what it seems to suggest. I wonder if this instance was one of those: a real-life person made some expression or gesture, or did some act, that seemed to get to the root of who the character was, but so that the end result was quite unlike the inspiration.
 
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