The Wheel of Time Casting Call, Tier 3, Part 3

Once again, the characters of The Wheel of Time must submit themselves to be casted by yours truly. The characters have no say in the matter, but sometimes commentators do. I have thought about Berelain, and find myself agreeing that Anne Hathaway may not be the best choice for her. The problem is that she just isn’t . . . sultry . . . enough. So, I have started with a replacement for Berelain. I have no problems, whatsoever with my newly casted First of Mayene.

As before, if you need any info as to what exactly I am doing here, look no further than the previous link. Also, the beginning of Part One has a lot of useful info as well.

Here we go.

I went with sultry first, then dark hair. The pale skin had to be sacrificed a little here, but I think this is as good a choice as they come. I will tell you, this lady was also one of my runner-up choices for Lanfear as well.

Juliet Landau as Berelain

Juliet Landau is gorgeous, ‘sultry,’ and has a great presence. I think she not only covers the needed criteria for Berelain, but beats those criteria into submission.

Places you’ve possibly seen her:
Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel
Ed Wood
Guest appearing on various TV shows

Caroline Damodred

Moraine’s cousin is described as “short and slender with a pale beauty. She has large dark eyes. She wears a kesiera. She strongly resembles Moiraine, but has a throaty, sultry voice.” She is one of the rebels hanging out with Darlin for awhile, and even in her first appearance (meeting with Rand), shows that she has good common sense and strong character.

Dark hair, pretty, sultry, and short. Well, my choice isn’t necessarily short, but then again, she’s not too tall either. It will also be the case with the character I choose for Moraine herself, but I think height will be something the filmmakers and director can hide on screen.

Lauren Graham as Caroline Damodred

Lauren Graham is a pretty and dark-haired actress, and does a good job of playing woman in control. I can’t say that I ever really watched the Gilmore Girls, but was pretty awesome in Flash of Genius, and I like her in the new Parenthood TV show as well.

Places you’ve possibly seen her:
Gilmore Girls
Flash of Genius

Carlinya Sedai

Everyone’s favorite “cold” Aes Sedai – in fact, I am relatively sure that every time Carlinya is described, she is described as “cold.” But not be much of a peoples-person. She is also pale, with dark hair and eyes.

Rachel Griffiths as Carlinya Sedai

It would be hard to not see Rachel Griffiths as “cold.” Even when she’s smiling at the camera, she has the look of, “I have much more important things to do than to be smiling at you.” She also has naturally dark hair (though not in this picture), and is a fan-frakkin-tastic actress.

Places you’ve possibly seen her:
Six Feet Under
Brothers and Sisters
My Best Friend’s Wedding

Chel Vanin

Mat’s number one horse thief, spy, and information gatherer. Chel was introduced in Lord of Chaos, and has been around quite a bit since then. He is described as fat and gap-toothed, but able to steal a horse out from under its rider.

Timothy Spall as Chel Vanin

Peter Pettigrew, aka Timothy Spall, is all of those things. He is also an awesome actor, and one of the only redeeming factors in Rockstar. He even looks a bit gap-toothed in this photo.

Places you’ve possibly seen him:
The Harry Potter Series


Strong, pretty, and a bit shorter than Bain, Chiad makes up the second of my favorite little love-circle-trio in the series. Another Aiel Maiden, and these aren’t the easiest to cast, but we’ll see what we can do.

Alicia Witt as Chiad

I like the idea of Alicia Witt as Chiad for two reasons. First, Alicia Witt seriously needs to be in more movies. She’s beautiful, she’s a great actress, and she shines when she’s on screen. Second, she looks a little like Laura Prepon, who I casted as Bain. I know Chiad and Bain are not blood-related, but I really like the idea of them looking similar, as it gives even more humor to the whole Bain-Chiad-Gaul thing.

Places you’ve possibly seen her:
The Sopranos
Vanilla Sky
Friday Night Lights

Colavaere Saighan

One of the shortest-termed queens in Cairhien history, I’m pretty sure, went to Colavaere. She spent the first few books we knew of her in attempting to manipulate Rand, and basically just being a dirty fighter. Then she tried a major move while Rand was out of commission, and paid the ultimate price for it. She is cold, pretty (but short of beautiful), and in her middle years.

Michelle Forbes as Colavaere
I first saw Michelle Forbes (that I remember, anyway), in Star Trek episodes, and then later in a great little Kevin Spacey flick called Swimming with Sharks. She is one of those actresses that has always stuck with me for some reason – I loved her in the few movies I’ve seen her in, as well as the multiple TV shows she’s done over the years. She will pull off our short-lived queen very well.

Places you’ve possibly seen her:
Battlestar Galactica
Star Trek: The Next Generation
True Blood

Dain Bornhald

The apple in Geoffram Bornhald’s eye, his son Dain, who takes a turn for the worse once his good father passes on. Dain is first introduced in the Eye of the World, and since he’s a Whitecloak, he’s a bit of a jerk (hint: they all are). He is narrow-faced, and takes on quite the brooding personality by The Shadow Rising.

Davis Bloome as Dain Bornhald
Sam Witwer had a lot of success playing the tragic character of Doomsday in Smallville, and I think will fit this role perfectly. He has a dark demeanor, is what I would consider “narrow-faced,” and seems to be mad all the time. He has mostly done TV roles, so this could be a good break for him.

Places you’ve possibly seen him:
Battlestar Galactica

Damer Flinn

Ol’ Granpa Asha’man as the kids call him (or would, if they knew better), Flinn has been one of the loyal Asha’Man at Rand’s side for several books now. He is old and leathery, and a great healer, and the descriptions we get of him make me think he would be charming to be around. He also discovered a new way of Healing, which is pretty awesomesauce.

Christopher Lloyd as Damer Flinn
As far as I’m concerned, Christopher Lloyd can play any role he damn well chooses. Hell, I’d let him play Rand if they could CGI sixty years off his face. The guy is one of the finest and funniest actors of the last century, able to play any character given him. He nailed Damer Flinn’s role before he even read the script.

Places you’ve for sure seen him:
Back to the Future
The Addams Family
Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

Well, that’s it for this week. Next week, we’ll go through the rest of the D’s and onward.


11 thoughts on “The Wheel of Time Casting Call, Tier 3, Part 3

  1. While everyones tastes varies, there’s still a generally common perception of what REALLY beautiful actually is…And I’m pretty sure that Juliet Landau would be very low on the list. There’s a lot of features she has that would be considered average to flat out bad; a horribly gaunt face, for example. Very knobby knees and semi-bowlegged. WAY too skinny and frail.

    For the most part, true beauty is all about symmetry and fullness. It’s less about a personal opinion about what beauty is to you, and more about what is undeniable perfection…which is what Berelain is.

    A brunette Tabrett Bethell is VERY close to universally beautiful, even if she’s not someone’s personal taste.

  2. Hmmm, well there certainly seems to be enough dissent in this choice that I should rethink it, but I will be honest, I do not believe there actually is a universal ‘definition’ of beauty – even Plato came to the conclusion that, through using Beauty as a Form, that one can never say something or someone is beautiful, but rather that someone or something seems beautiful. Symmetry never comes up in the conversation (at least, not in Theaetetus, which is where he does most of the talking on it). While he does agree that there is a universal concept of Beauty, there is no one way to describe it. I tend to kind of follow that line of thinking. And while I think Tabrett Bethell has that stereotypical ‘hot,’ and ‘sexy’ shape and demeanor that typical males may fantasize about, I hardly call her anywhere close to the epitome of Beautiful.

    However, I do believe that I should reopen the case on Berelain. I don’t think I’m going to have as much disagreement when I get to Galad and Lanfear (though there will obviously be some disagreement), but for some reason, Berelain has caused a lot of problems. I may make a post on it specifically soon, as someone has also asked if I take suggestions for other characters – maybe there should be an open thread on that here.

  3. Oh, and for the record, I think you are pretty much spot on with all your picks. Goes without saying that anyone would have trouble with casting the three most “beautiful people in the world”

    I actually got the “Symmetry” thing from a documentary I watched. They would show random people two different pictures of the same person. One pic would be perfectly symmetrical, the other altered by making one side very, VERY slightly different. The ratio of people who chose the symmetrical picture as the “best looking” was staggering.

    There’s also the FacePrints study done by Victor Johnston at New Mexico State. He had the survey on a website where people would rate through hundreds of pictures. The lowest rated were filtered out, the highest rated were merged until they received perfect 10’s. Nearly all of the perfect 10’s were extremely symmetrical.

    Personal tastes may vary, but there is a biological side of beauty to consider. For example, I personally don’t think Angelina Jolie is very attractive. But I am mature and smart enough to know the difference between my personal preference/tastes, and what is understandably beautiful. I absolutely understand how she would be considered beautiful.

    But after talking to people at work about this all day and showing them pictures of Juliet Landau, one thing was made clear: most people (men and women both) found her average at best, to down right creepy/ugly. Very few found her gorgeous or beautiful. Even those guys that did admitted they could see why people wouldn’t find her beautiful.

    Your first choice with Hathaway was better. But she has too big of teeth and too deep of wrinkles around the mouth when she smiles. I can’t imagine Berelain having either =)

    Keep up the casting! Doing great! Just a shame we don’t have a movie/show to put them in.

  4. Thanks for the kind words.

    I can certainly see the reasons why Juliet Landau may not be considered beautiful either. I am definitely going to go about rethinking this, and put up a post specifically for people to place suggestions on certain characters.

    Thanks again for reading, I hope you continue to enjoy!

  5. I am afraid I agree with the consensus against Landau as Berelain. She has, in a good light, an otherwordly attraction, but by no means beautiful. I try not to be too… critical about what other people find attractive, but this seems unrealistic. Also, she is in her forties whereas Berelain is a littler older than the boys.
    I personally have Landau as Mesaana, with that dark hair, huge blue eyes and some height – not to mention she could easily pull off that switch between dreamy and powerful. But just my opinion, I’m not here to promote my list (honest).

    I must also mention that Lauren Graham is 5′ 9″ which is tall for a women in our world, let alone Jordan’s, and extremely over a normal Cairheinin range.

    Vanin is inspired! One thing I like about your list is how many new ideas there are, not just the usual ones regurgitated.

    Your Dain is quite a find as well – that expression he always seems to have, of distaste bordering on anger, is spot on. I’m tired of seeing the Sutherlands as the Bornhalds, cast because ‘oh look, they’re father and son too!’ so well done.

  6. No need at all to be concerned about negativity – you’re just speaking your opinion. I’ve only ever actually “disapproved” (and deleted) one comment on this site before, and it was from outright rudeness, not criticism. Criticism, I can handle.

    For Berelain, you will be pleased to know (if you haven’t seen it yet) that the discussion did move me towards recasting her, and I was much more pleased with what the readers voted on:

    As for Lauren Graham (and again, Moiraine, once you get there), unfortunately, height had to be sacrificed for them, simply because the actresses I just thought were too good for the roles limited my choices. I do mention a couple times throughout the blog (though may have forgotten on this entry) that I would be pleased with actors and actresses not being the exact height, because if nothing else, if it was extremely necessary to show characters based on their height, camera tricks could be used to make people appear shorter and taller than they really are.

    Thanks for your comments and for reading!

  7. Ahh yes, I did get to the new Berelain part but alas too late to vote!

    Thank you for being understanding about criticism – I have faced some hostility in the past after airing my disagreement, so I feel the need to make absolutely sure no one is offended.

  8. Perfect casting: Vanin and Dain. I don’t know how you came up with them but they fit the roles to a T!
    Okay casting: Carlinya, Chiad, Colavaere but isn’t Alicia Witt a little short?
    Questionable: Caroline Damodred, Damer Flinn (try someone a little younger for both roles)
    Disagree: Berelain (the winner of the votes Cindy Sampson is a good choice)

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