5 Literary Fantasy Characters I’d Love to Cast
I thought of this post recently when I was watching Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone for like the hundredth time. I looked at Daniel Radcliffe and thought “Damn that’s great casting”. Sometimes they just get it right.
Below is my list of 5 literary fantasy characters that I would love to cast, and who I think would manage to pull it off. I’m keen to hear your thoughts…
Druss the Legend created by David Gemmell
This is always a hotly debated topic whenever I see someone recommend a particular actor. Druss is, for a lot of people, the main man and so there are going to be a million different opinions on which actor would be the best to pull it off. I’ve thought about it a few times but I never can quite out my finger on the one actor that is a definite YES! I think the problem is because of the way he’s portrayed on and in the books; as you can see from the images above, they aren’t consistent. Also, in the books he’s described differently, partly due to the fact that they document his life and so he would naturally look different as he grew older. I’ll focus on the Druss that I see when I read the novels; the aged and scarred, mountainous, bearded, demon-in-the-axe carrying warrior, with a Lantrian Red in one hand and Snaga in the other.
I’ve read some views of “perfect” actors for Druss, these include; Jason Mamoa, Russell Crowe, and Oliver Reed. But if it came down to it, my choice would most definitely be… Ray Winstone.
Surprised? Don’t be. This rough and ready Englishman is as versatile as they come and he’s hard as nails. The height might be an issue but it would be with every actor, with the exception of those who would be picked purely because they’re tall, as opposed to them actually being able to act. I would be buzzing if Ray Winstone was chosen to play Druss (the Legend version). What do you think?
Monza Murcatto created by Joe Abercrombie
Monza Murcatto AKA the Snake of Talins AKA the Butcher of Caprille is as badass as they come; she is thrown down a mountain by Duke Orso of Talins and survives. Revenge becomes her only goal.
Monza Murcatto is a character that I could read and reread over and over again. Lord Grimdark created a cold-blooded killer with a complicated backstory. I love Monza because she is not your typical female protagonist, she does the kind of things you’d expect from a male protagonist. I don’t say this lightly, I wish more literary women were as gritty and ruthless as Murcatto; not reliant on men or falling in love but instead they’re laser-focussed and drenched in blood. Is that weird?
Anyway, Monza is described as being tall with pale skin, dark black hair, and very easy on the eye, even after she is thrown down a mountain and left for dead. With this description in mind, I have a few female leads I think could pull it off.
The first being Olivia Wilde. I think of Wilde as Quorra in TRON: Legacy. The alabaster skin, piercing blue eyes and strong jawline. I think she’d be perfect. Now I do think she would need to be “beat up” a little bit to truly fit the role but I’d be more than happy with her as Monza Murcatto.
The second actress I think could play Murcatto is Chloe Grace Moretz. I loved her as the foul-mouthed child superhero, ‘Hit-Girl’, and she did a pretty good job as ‘Carrie’ (remember the whole blood-drenched bit?) so I think she could do a fine job playing Abercrombie’s kickass (I know, sorry) protagonist.
Durzo Blint created by Brent Weeks
Don’t let the book cover fool you – I think it’s terrible. But Durzo Blint isn’t. Without wanting to litter spoilers all over this description I’ll simply say that he’s a ‘Wetboy’ (or ‘assassin’ – although he’d probably kill you for calling him that) who has been operating in Cenaria City for a pretty long time. Durzo is described as having blonde scruffy hair, pockmarked cheeks with noticeable scars, and blue eyes. And (this isn’t really relevant) he eats raw cloves of garlic like they’re tic tacs. Yikes. He is also a little older and this shows in his features.
The one person I think that could really portray Durzo Blint and do him justice is Tommy Flanagan. I can hear the cries of “WHO?!”, bear with me, the chances are you already know him. He portrayed Chibs in Sons of Anarchy but is most memorable (for me) as Morrison in Mel Gibson’s Braveheart. I chose him not because of his facial scarring – although that’s an added bonus – but because I think he acts with a certain coolness and distance that personifies Durzo Blint. Throw some greys on him, give him some knives and I think he’s good to go!
Sand Dan Glokta created by Joe Abercrombie
Man, I love Colonel Sand dan Glokta. There’s a reason I’ve chosen two characters created by Joe Abercrombie in such a short list, and it’s this; he write awesome characters! Glokta is one of the most complex characters I’ve read. He is one that leaves you confused as to how you should feel about him. Repulsed? Proud? Redeemable? Exactly, I have no idea! Glokta is a former champion swordsman in the ‘King’s Own’ (army) and was an arrogant SOB. Until he was captured and tortured by the Gurkish; now he’s bitter, crippled, and damn good at torturing people. Because Glokta is a character with a tragic backstory and twisted insight into his own position in society, I feel it would need an actor with a huge range to fully realise the character.
My choice for Sand dan Glokta is Andy Serkis. Serkis is one of the most versatile and talented actors the big screen has ever seen, it’s his ability to immerse himeslf in a role that convinced me. Glokta walks with a very pronounced limp, his teeth have been removed methodically so that he cannot eat solid foods. I imagine Glokta talking with a very twisted mouth, making unusual sounds as he tries to form some sounds. I think Serkis would be able to absolutely nail these aspects of Glokta’s character. As well as being able to fully capture his personality.
Thomas Senlin created by Josiah Bancroft
Thomas Senlin is the headmaster of a school in a small coastal village. He marries a much younger woman (a former pupil of his) and takes her to the city of Babel for their honeymoon. Senlin is in awe of the Tower of Babel and is ecstatic to finally arrive. But things do not go well. His wife goes missing and he must ascend the tower to find her.
I reviewed Senlin Ascends quite recently (click here to read it) and I struggled a little with the book. Nevertheless, I am intrigued by THomas Senline, the tall, reedy headmaster at the centre of the tale. I think he interests me because he’s a character in a fantasy/steampunk novel that is just so…’normal’. He is a guy that you’ve probably met before, whether at school, college, or university. He fits in like a pair of crocs in the Antarctic, and, surprisingly, I really like that.
The guy I would choose to play Thomas Senlin is Stephen Merchant; the Bristolian finny man with a penchant for appearing more awkward than anyone else I’ve seen on screen. I mean, just look at his role as Dave Gibbs in The Big Bang Theory, he’s brilliant. I also think he could cast aside the comedy aspect and fully embrace the seriousness of Senlin. Perfect.
I hoped you liked my choices for 5 Literary Fantasy Characters I’d Love to Cast and I’m sure there are some where you think “yeah, I get that” and those that make you exclaim “Hell no!”. I’m interested to hear some alternative or better choices.