Fan Casting

Fancasting: Disney’s Hercules (Live Action)

So, I personally have never been a huge lover of this film. I’ve come to appreciate it more as I’ve gotten older and watched it more but it’s never been my favorite. I like a lot of the songs and I like the Muses, Meg and Hades. But outside of that, the movie is fine. But, since I have heard they are making a live action remake, I thought I’d throw my hat into the ring of fancasting the upcoming film.

So far, I have enjoyed most of the live action remakes. They’re not perfect but I enjoy them, some I really love. As of this post, I have seen Mulan and I think it’s fine, you can read my review here.

Hercules

In the animated film, Tate Donovan provides the voice for Hercules. I would loosely call him a “himbo”, which is an attractive but unintelligent man lol. I don’t mean it in a terrible way but it’s super true lol. Hercules isn’t a smart aleck, streetwise but he’s naive, innocent and charming in a awkward way. Tate Donovan does a great job in perfecting this through his voice acting. But he’s a good guy and things he does is to get back to his family in Olympus. He’s good-natured, has a good heart and I think he’s a fine character.

Top Choice: Jonathan Whitesell or an Unknown

Okay listen, I know he pretty much looks nothing like the animated version but I always think of him first because he played Hercules on Once Upon a Time and I liked him. We didn’t get nearly enough of him and I’ll forever be upset that he didn’t last past that one episode. I liked how earnest, sweet and innocent he was, I also always think about him whenever I think about Hercules. He’s not your conventional handsome (which I never had a thing for animated Hercules) but he’s already played the part for a Disney property and I didn’t find anyone else I liked outside of my honorable mentions. Also, do something different with his hair. I didn’t care for his “Justice Bieber swoop” lol.

Here is a clip of him as Hercules in OUAT, skip to 1:30.

Otherwise, they’ll just need to find an unknown like they did with Mena Massoud for Aladdin because there’s no one I like that stands out to me the way other known or lesser known actors have done in previous fan casts. I don’t think anyone over 30 should play Hercules because Hercules and Meg seemed to be at the most in their 20s and all the other Hercules films, he’s always older. Besides, with my choices for his birth parents, Hercules could be biracial… just saying.

Honorable Mentions: Cody Christian, Dacre Montgomery, John Boyega, Kelvin Harrison Jr. (he’s so serious to me but I’d like to see him do a more lighthearted film) Aaron Taylor Johnson (would be soooo perfect if he was younger).

Megara “Meg”

Susan Egan provided the iconic voice for Meg. Her voice is so different that I can literally hear her just from looking at this picture. She is free-spirited, independent and a quick witted woman who was hurt by her ex boyfriend and she is bitter about relationships. She is cynical, snarky and she manages to do her own hero work too. Hercules falls for Meg at first sight but she seduces him because it was her assignment but she actually starts to fall for him and even saves him, giving her life.

Top Choice: Elizabeth Gillies

I’ve seen this casting a lot and I’ve always liked it. I shopped around to see if there was anyone else who spoke to me so outside of my honorable mentions, I think Liz Gillies would be great. She has this really interesting voice, she can come off really hard and snarky but clearly has emotions lol and she has a great singing voice. I think she’d be great as Meg.

Honorable Mentions: Zendaya, Hailee Steinfield

Philoctetes/Phil

Danny Devito provided the voice for Phil. He is a crotchety, old Satyr (half-human, half-goat) who served as a trainer of heroes in Ancient Greece. He meets, trains and befriends Hercules in the film. He is easily annoyed but he has a big heart, he cares about those he cares about lol. He loves beautiful women and will flirt but is often faced with rejection lol.

Top Choice: Danny Devito

There is no other choice! He doesn’t have to do anything physical, they can just use motion capture for his face to catch his facial expressions, similar to what they did in the animation when they used his mouth movements for the character. They can have someone else physically be there in a green suit for the movements.

Honorable Mention: Peter Dinklage, Paul Giamatti

Hades

James Wood provided the iconic performance of Hades. I read that Hades was originally supposed to be “menacing in a quiet, spooky way”, but the creators thought that James Woods’ manner of speaking “a mile a minute” would be a “great take” for a villain. It would be nice for him to return but he says some off the wall stuff these days, so let’s just let him stay on Twitter lol.

Top Choice: Jeff Goldblum

So, I am still looking into this role but I do like the idea of Jeff Goldblum because he can be that slimy type but likable. We’ve seen him play this kind of character before. His delivery isn’t necessarily similar to James Woods but his delivery is interesting and quick paced and a little off kilter. I think it would work.

Honorable Mentions: Tom Hiddleston, Willem Dafoe, Michael Keaton

Pain and Panic

Bobcat Goldthwait and Matt Frewer provides the voices for these two henchmen. I was thinking about them and I don’t know if they should have the same look for a live action film. Sure, they’ll be CGI if so, but I feel like they’d be a little creepy and ugly. Like, they’re not cute but I feel like it wouldn’t as dynamic as like Gollum. They can still be creatures but I just don’t know if the design should be the same. Anyways, I have a few choices for them.

Jonah Hill as Pain and Michael Cera as Panic

Come on, you know they’d be perfect.

Keegan Michael Key as Pain and Jordan Peele as Panic

Another great duo! They’d play really well off each other.

I think either duo would have similar dynamics but at the same time different dynamics because of how they interact with each other. In the Hill/Cera combo, Pain (Hill) would be a bit more snarky with a sardonic humor and Panic.. would be Michael Cera lol. In the Key/Peele combo (Pain) Key would be the ‘cooler’ one of the two and Panic (Peele) would constantly whine with his moments of greatness lol and easily swayed by Pain.

Zeus and Hera

Rip Torn and Samantha Egger provided the voices in the animated film. I don’t know anything about Samantha Egger but Rip Torn had an iconic voice (R.I.P). But they are Hercules’ parents who live on Mount Olympus. Hercules was stolen from them by Pain and Panic when he was a baby. They spend their lives watching him grow up until he is able to return to them by mastering his strength and completing quests. Zeus gets to speak with Hercules through a statue in an… alter place? lol

Top Choices: Kurt Russell & Gina Torres

We all know Kurt Russell would be perfect as Zeus lol, give him a golden tint to his skin, he could have the same energy Zeus had in the movie, a dad who will tell dad jokes but who can also be scary and intimidating if need be. Not to mention, he looks so good next to Gina Torres who would be an amazing Hera. Give her more to do, she can also have the pink/purple skin like in the movie and be Zeus’ more level headed wife lol. I tried to find a picture of Gina Torres I liked with her curly hair, I couldn’t but I want her with curly hair as Hera.

Amphitryon and Alcemene

Hal Holbrook and Barbara Barrie played Hercules’ adoptive parents and they’re not in the movie a ton once Hercules leaves to go to the distance (lol) but they are just as important to him as Zeus and Hera are. They should be loving parents but also aware their son is a little awkward and clumsy and have to deal with the outrage from the people because of that. Not where they blame him but they are aware of his well intended destruction.

Top Choices: John Stamos and Justina Machado

My friend Karina suggested Justina Machado. I considered John Stamos but I thought he might still be a little young but I think he’s old enough to be the young dad when they find baby Hercules and then be an older man when he’s a teenager. As for Justina, I haven’t watched her show on Netflix yet but what I have seen, I really like her energy. I think they look great together for one thing and she’d be a great mother.

I don’t have any other options at the moment. Stanley Tucci and Cristela Alonzo could work as well.

The Fates

In the wiki they’re considered “antagonists” and I guess they don’t do anything to help but it’s never the Fates’ job to interfere but regardless, their jobs are to cut the strings of those about to die. They share one eye that allows them to see into the future.

Lachesis, Atropos, Clotho

Amanda Plummer (who I am familiar with), Carole Shelley and Paddi Edwards play the three fates. They predict Hades’ attempt to conquer Olympus. They basically just watch the events unfold and will cut the strings of those who are about to die. I’m going to do two different casting choices. I like the idea of them being sisters of different ages. So, first, I’m going to post my sisters with older ladies.

Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Shirley Maclaine, Olympia Dukakis.

Both sets have worked with each other and work so great with each other. So, I’d like Fonda, Tomlin and Maclaine or Tomlin, Macaline and Dukakis.

Carol Kane Maya Rudolph, Constance Wu

I was thinking of actresses who could work well together, play off each other well and be funny. I think all three of them are funny. They’ll bring different kinds of humor and I think they’d work really well with each other. They can look weird or they could give you a Sanderson sister’s aesthetic lol in terms of the youngest being beautiful and crazy, the middle one trying to keep the peace but being just as crazy as her sisters and the oldest being the craziest lol. I think it’d be funny.

The Muses

Thalia, Clio, Calliope, Melpomene, Terpsichore

Some of these you might have seen before but I really like the casting of these ladies. They are all black women with different ranges, different sounds and skin tones. I think that’s important.

Calliope the Muse of Epic Tales- Renee Elise Goldsberry

I was introduced to her through Hamilton back in 2016 and I love her voice. I’ve seen her in a few other things since then and I really like her energy outside of Hamilton. Her voice is amazing. I think she would do the leader of the Muses justice. She’s tall, regal and she has great range.

Melpomene the Muse of Tragedy Kelly Rowland

Of course Kelly Rowland is best known for being part of Destiny’s Child for years. I always thought she was the better singer in the group. I actually saw someone fancast her as Calliope but she gives me more Melpomene vibes. Especially when given the big hair. Her voice is in the high alto range, which I think would work with my other choices.

Clio the Muse of History Emmy Raver-Lampman

I was introduced to her when Hamilton announced it was going on tour, she opened the HamilTour as Angelica Schuyler but then I was later introduced again through The Umbrella Academy where she plays Allison Hargreeves. I like her on the show and I like her energy. She was my first choice for this Muse. I tried to see if I could find someone else I liked better. I didn’t lol. I listened to her sing from Wicked among other Broadway shows and her voice is amazing. She’s more of a Soprano, from what I can tell, which balances out the group.

Terpsichore the Muse of DanceKeke Palmer

I like Keke Palmer alot and this Muse always came off as the youngest to me in the group, I don’t know why but she does. I think Keke Palmer fits her energy, and she looks great with short hair and her voice is on the deeper side which would blend in beautifully with the other singers.

Thalia the Muse of ComedyAmber Riley

I would have it no other way. Amber Riley can blow. I listened to her sing quite a bit and she gives me chills. Her voice is amazing. No other way. Amazing range so she can fill any gaps of how high or low someone needs to go.

Honorable Mentions, because you could probably put any of these ladies as any of them, I wanted to just give some other suggestions. You can decide for yourself which of these honorable mentions could fit which muse: Uzo Aduba, Cynthia Erivo, Patina Miller, Shanice Williams, Lizzo, Jordin Sparks, Coco Jones (for Terpsichore).

Other Gods

We don’t spend a lot of time with other Gods but just to throw some suggestions out there, I think it would be nice, since the Gods in the animated film are literally different colors, that they should be diverse. Shoot, they could even have the different colored skin: green, pink,purple etc. I’ll just cast the ones we see the most of, Hermes, Apollo and Aphrodite.

Simon Pegg as Hermes

I saw a lot of people choose Stanley Tucci and yeah he’d be great too but it’s kind of an obviously choice so here ya go!

Trevante Rhodes as Apollo

I mean… why not? Lol put this man in more things anyway lol

Emeraude Toubia as Aphrodite

Honorable Mentions: Logan Browning, Kat Graham, Gemma Chan, Blake Lively, Zoe Kravitz, Alison Sudol

So that’s my fancast for Hercules. Some of these took a lot longer than I thought lol, some of these were kind of hard to cast but I think I did a pretty good job here.

The Tone

Hercules would be an interesting movie because they could go two ways with the tone of the film. They could do a serious tone but that would be like literally all the other Hercules or Greek Gods films. The animated movie stands apart because of the approach to the film. The bright colors, the music, the tone is light-hearted, and I think that works. I think the live action film should maintain that tone. It has some serious moments and it should embrace those but should also embrace the lighthearted tone.

So what do you think? Let me know in the comments what you think of my choices? Let me know your choices or why you disagree or agree with mine.

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