The Wheel of Time Casting Call, Tier 1 – Elayne and Perrin

Welcome back to The Wheel of Time Casting Call! We’re down to the end-game here, crunching the big numbers for the stars of our movie, and it’s going to be a fun, exciting, and likely controversial last five weeks!

Before I jump in, I would like to say that for this last Tier, I have necessarily had to let age go as a strong determining factor. The problem is that all the main characters are young. And not just young, but literally teenagers. And I’m sorry guys, and I mean no offense if you are really into these teeny-bopper actors right now, but most of these young actors in Hollywood right now simply don’t fit my needs. They’re either too fake-looking (for the women), or they just simply can’t act. I don’t care how much you like One Tree Hill, or the 90210 remake, the actors suck. Sorry if that bothers you. Now, for my Casting, for any of the characters where I can fit the age criteria, I certainly will, but I’m pretty sure that only one of the main characters I’m casting is going to fall in the actual age of the actor I use. However, I will be using actors that can (and have been known to) play younger roles than their age, and I hope you all find this to be a forgivable offense.

As a note on the art: For most of the art I use for characters, I am getting it from the amazing Seamas Gallagher gallery, who does some of the best WoT art out there. Some of the other I’ve used is from the equally amazing Jeremy Saliba. A lot of the art I use is cropped, so that I can fit the most character on the screen without having to deal with fancy borders and such, so you guys should definitely check these guys’ sites out (where you will find the full, beautiful pictures) and support them if at all possible. Some characters, no matter how important(ish) they are, do not have art though.

Oh, and there will be spoilers, up to and including Towers of Midnight. You have been warned.

The first part of Tier 1 will be casting a couple major characters that get a ton of flack throughout the series for having some rather boring and unfortunately long-winded storylines. Elayne (and her ‘Queening’) and Perrin (and his ‘Faile-ing/ – no double entendres there, nosiree!) are often lumped in a category of main characters that people get tired of reading about, due to some stupid decisions they make (I’m looking at you all the time, Elayne!) or some really long ‘quests’ they take. These two storylines I’m referring to are also unfortunately thrown into the portion of the series that are often argued as the worst books written – Path of Daggers through Crossroads of Twlight (though neither ends there, they take up a lot of time through those books), which doesn’t help redeem these story arcs in most readers’ eyes.

Perrin Aybara and Elayne Trakand, by Seamas Gallagher

However, when you take them on the whole, both storylines are not only necessary for the character development of Elayne and Perrin, but they’re kinda fun – if they were shortened anyway. I mean, Perrin chasing through the wilderness, then pretty much single-handedly ending the Shaido threat is nothing to be laughed at – it just should have been condensed down to one book (at the most, two), each in ten-to-twelve-chapter-lumps, instead of spread out through five frakkin books. And Elayne’s was important, and we always knew it was coming, because it finally puts her in a place where she can have importance in the Last Battle.

So let’s talk about them and what we need to cast them.

For most of the series, Elayne Trakand is the strong-willed princess Daughter-Heir to the throne of Andor. She eventually takes said throne, but even with all the political maneuverings, her pregnancy, and all the shiz-nit she’s been through, we still have to remember, she’s a young woman. At nineteen years old (and 17 or 18 when the series starts), she should, in all honestly, be expected to make rash, impulsive, and quite frankly stupid decisions. Which she does with great aplomb. So we have a young woman, prone to making decisions that may not be the wisest in the world, and she’s young.

Physically, she is strikingly beautiful, with red-gold curly hair, and sapphire-like blue eyes. She is tall-ish for a woman, and has long limbs and good form. She is mentioned to have a “perfect oval face,” and full red lips. So we’re looking at someone here who fits a very traditional and classic sense of beauty.

A couple favorites for Elayne seem to be Amanda Seyfried and Amber Heard. Amanda Seyfried is a full-on dismissal for me – it’s not that she doesn’t fit some of the criteria, I just think she has a quirky look to her beauty that doesn’t fit that near-perfection we need. As for Heard, sure she’s pretty (hot?), but I don’t particularly find her acting all that suitable. Granted, I’ve only seen her in Pineapple Express, but I just wasn’t impressed. That doesn’t mean she couldn’t make a good Elayne, I just don’t particularly see it. So who would I choose?

Ladies and gents, I give you Anna Camp. Many will not know who this lovely lady is, but I assure you, after seeing her pictures and checking out some of her acting, you should have no problem accepting her for Elayne. She is absolutely gorgeous in the traditional sense, and has almost all the features necessary – height, oval face, gold hair (possibly a little dye to add some red-ish-ness to it), and beauty. We would have to give her some blue contacts, but I’m not too terribly concerned about that, since we’ve always known we’ll have to make sacrifices here and there. The point is, she is beautiful, fits most of the physical criteria, and is a great actor on top of it all. Plus, she looks like Amy Yasbeck, who is my Morgase pick. Enjoy!

Anna Camp as Elayne Trakand

Places you’ve possibly seen her:
True Blood
Mad Men
Various other TV shows

Perrin ebook cover
Next up on the list is our favorite EMO, Perrin Aybara. Known for, amongst other things, whining his way through many of the books, Perrin is one of the ta’veren, which means he (likely) has a major role to play in the Last Battle. He is the mopiest of Our Heroes, but he is also possibly the most logical and rational as well, making decisions based on long contemplation and thought, instead of just jumping into the mix and hoping for the best. He became the leader he needed to be in Tower, and is likely to be at the head of Rand’s forces beside Mat in the upcoming battle.

Perrin is very large – not tall, and certainly not “thick.” He is pound for pound muscle, having worked for years at the blacksmith’s forge, and he shows it. Everyone that comes in contact with him for the first time notes his size. He is of average height, has curly brown hair, and has been sporting a full beard since The Shadow Rising. His eyes used to be brown, but are now golden like a wolf’s.

A lot of people like Ryan Reynolds for this role. I am actually a big fan of Reynolds as an actor – I was uber-excited to see him playing Hal Jordan (though I would have rather seen him play Barry Allen), I really liked him in the new Amityville, and he’s just all-around a funny and charismatic actor. Unfortunately, I just don’t think he fits what I’m looking for. I know he can get buff (there’s a great picture of him holding an axe for Amityville that I think most people get their Ryan=Perrin inspiration from), but he overall has a very slender frame, and I just don’t see his voice working for Perrin. However, were I to not use the actor I’ve chosen, Ryan would be in strong contention for this role.

So who did I go with? Scottish actor Paul Telfer, that’s who. When looking for actors for Perrin, I originally just googled “strong young actors,” and started filtering through pictures. One picture in particular (top-left below) caught my eye, so I started looking up Paul. And it turns out that I actually knew who he was, having watched NCIS and Hotel Babylon. So I rewatched the episodes necessary and found myself really liking his abilities. Then to top it all off, he has (or can have) a great build to play Perrin. He is, of course, older than Perrin, but I think he looks young enough so as not to cause any major concerns.

Paul Telfer as Perrin Aybara

Places you’ve possibly seen him:
Hotel Babylon
Various other TV Shows

So there you have it. Tier 1 is going strong, and next week, we’ll take a look at a few rather important villains, and see if you guys can stand behind my choice for the most beautiful woman in the world.

-Brandon Daggerhart

19 thoughts on “The Wheel of Time Casting Call, Tier 1 – Elayne and Perrin

  1. maybe it’s me but i don’t find Anna Camp anything near pretty/beautiful and just can’t imagine her playing Elayne who is much hyped for her looks…

  2. I actually approve of both. I like both your picks here. My issue is that the picture you chose for Elayne, the red head in the green dress with gold trim – that’s not Elayne. That’s Aviendah. Elayne is in white, next to her.

  3. Errr… are you sure about that? I mean, I actually don’t know for certain, but logically, it seems to me that Elayne would be the one wearing all the fancy clothes, while Aviendha would be wearing the plain blouse and skirt (with a big-ass belt knife!) 🙂

  4. Not from that scene. That was right after they left Tanchico, and did the magic with the Bowl of the Winds. If you remember, Aviendah had started wearing fancy dresses while in Tanchico, and she was worried that it was making her “wetlander soft,” but she did it anyway. Elayne, on the other hand, had to dress down cause she was still kinda under cover, hiding from her family. She had also just received (like a week or two ago) the biggest tongue lashing she ever receives in the series by her Warder, so she was probably pulling the meek thing.

  5. Telfer is also my pick for Perrin.

    Elayne is always tough; she has to be young as well as turn-heads beautiful. For a young actress I was looking at Saoirse Ronan (whos about 17 now), and for the more accomplished actor I was leading towards Olivia Wilde. Both have the perfect obstinate chins for sticking in the air.

  6. Actually the artist states: Elayne on the left, Aviendha center, Nynaeve on the right. It’s true that because we’re seeing it a bit from below and Aviendha is farther away in the circle, she looks a little less tall. And all of the hair colors are being influenced by the rainbow colored light which is just beginning to form an intricate braid at this point in the illustration.
    Any references to Phoenix are subconscious and unintentional, but I agree that the idea is AWESOME!!! Wish I had thought of that!
    Best wishes to all of you,
    Julie Bell

  7. I have to agree with Seenie about Camp, but also recognise that’s personal preference – further shown by me believing Seyfried is so close to my image of Elayne that I let her short stature slide. I read your stance on age, but I couldn’t agree with an actress unless she could appear to be the correct age, and Anna Camp looks older than her twenty-nine years. She does look like Yasbeck though, you’re right!

    I do see what you (and all the others) mean about Telfer, objectively, but I can’t help finding him…. creepy. Haha, I’m so difficult.

  8. As I said in my post for Faile, I love Telfer for Perrin. However, Anna Camp cannot pull off Elayne who is supposed to be super beautiful. I think she would rank as the third most beautiful woman in the series next to Lanfear and Morgase. Anna Camp only looks ok to me. So far, I have 3 to choose from: Amber Heard (but too old), Emily Van Camp (but maybe not good looking enough) or Laura Vandervoort.

  9. So, I just have to nit-pick here, because you’ve mentioned it three times in comments about Morgase being the second-most beautiful woman in the series.

    I’ve read every book through #9 at least 7 times, and after that, I’ve read each book at least 2 or 3 times, and I do not recall in any way there ever being a mention of Morgase being so beautiful that it would qualify her as being the “second most beautiful woman in the series.” I know Rand is super impressed with her, calling her something like “a mature Elayne, one that had ripened” or something like that, and other people definitely see it. However, every person who meets her is definitely not blown away by her beauty, like they are with Lanfear or Berelain. If anyone, I would say Berelain is definitely remarked on (by fans, and by Jordan himself through the context of the series) as the second most beautiful woman in the series.

    After that, people like Nynaeve, Egwene, Moraine, Allana, Myrele, Isendre, and Sevanna get far more comments from the “general public” than either Morgase or Elayne. In fact, when Mat meets Elayne, he even thinks to himself something to the effect of, “she’s okay.” This is Mat, who through book 10 literally wanted to roll around in the hay with tons of different women. The only person who really ever comments on how astonishingly beautiful Morgase or Elayne are is Rand, and I would say he’s at least a little biased. 😉 After that, Thom and Gareth each possibly comment on Morgase, but not enough so that I actually remember any passages. And Tallanvor’s love-struck, so he probably thinks so too, but we never see a POV of his.

    So, all that to say, I respectfully disagree. 🙂

  10. I’ve definitely seen a lot more dislike of Camp than I ever expected. As I’ve said dozens of times in this thing, “beauty is in the eye of the beholder,” but apparently my version of beauty is truly off from the majority of the readers!

    I responded to someone awhile back that soon, I plan to do a few updates to this list, and then create some sort of major database where I can more easily and readily update the entire thing anytime I feel like it, so Camp/Elayne is definitely in the top contenders to be revisited.

  11. Ok so maybe second most beautiful woman in the series is a bit too much but she’s definitely one of the more beautiful women in there. Also, i think Mat’s comment is more a reflection of his personality than on Morgase’s looks, you know, like he’s playing it cool by trying not to be too impressed while he’s inside the castle. So, while Amy Yasbeck is pretty enough, she doesn’t quite have the looks to pull it off. I think Nicole Kidman would be a better fit. Sorry. Please keep in mind that while I may disagree with some of your choices, I know they are based on your personal impressions of the characters. I truly am enjoying this especially since I think it’s the most comprehensive list I’ve seen so far.

  12. Again, I agree with Pomps assessment of the Yasbeck choice whilst disagreeing with his replacement 😉 Even putting aside my personal preference (I find Kidman barely pretty, let alone beautiful), Kidman does not look in her early thirties as Morgase does.
    I like Kate Winslet for it – to me she is beautiful and classy, not to mention having the ripe curves and similar colouring to the queen and looking like the age Morgase appears to be. Just my thoughts though, of course.
    I definitely agree about Mat playing it cool, along with his distaste for nobility; I’ve always read it as Morgase being one of the most beautiful women in the series.

  13. I would love to see the updated list and the complete database. Maybe you could add more characters, too. I’ve been re-reading the entire series in preparation for the last book and kept referring to your list (which I compiled in an Excel file) to see who you had playing whom (or is it who? i keep forgetting) and was disappointed to find some of them missing. You could probably add user suggestions with number of votes in your database! (just saying…)

  14. I found your blog while getting myself excited for the final book, and I have to say, “Kudos to you.” Until this moment, I feel that you nailed almost every character. Especially those that in my mind had extremely distinctive characteristics. Now however, I have a question for you. Did you by any chance consider Ryan Hurst as Perrin? The moment that I saw him as Opie in SoA I yelled at my tv. Add a lil’ dye to his hair and beard, and I only see Perrin. Not only this, but with his innate loyalty to any project/character that he is involved with, you know that you can rely on him to stick around for the Last Battle.

  15. Honestly, at the time, I had never heard of the guy, and one of my criteria for this blog was to only use actors that I could personally vouch on their abilities from my own experience of seeing them, instead of just basing off looks like so many other blogs do. HOWEVER, that being said, I have every intention sometime soon (I think I’ve been saying that for a couple years now, but REALLY this time!) of coming back and updating a lot of these with new actors/actresses I’ve discovered in the last couple years, and also just because of about 5% of them who I was 100% satisfied with – and Perrin was one of those (and Elayne for that matter, so this entire entry would get re-written).

    Thanks for reading!

  16. Absolutely. It has been my addicted pleasure. Honestly, any time that I find a well written, well thought out breakdown of things that I am interested in…. It’s like crack to me. I just can’t seem to stop reading.
    On the previous point, if you haven’t happened to have watched SoA yet, I highly recommend it. I don’t really watch movies very often, but I do tend to marathon a lot of tv shows. SoA just so happens to be basically the only show that I bounce in my chair every year while waiting for the next season to premiere.

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