F451: Casting Call [Option A]

Casting Call!

The conclusion of Ray Bradbury’s FAHRENHEIT 451 is exciting, thought-provoking, and truly incendiary. Upon arriving at the end of the novel, a reader is left with the task of sifting through the implications of the final section: Burning Bright. While there are many different strategies for conducting literary analysis, some find it helpful to consider the possibility of a film adaptation!

If you are intrigued by the prospect of analyzing FAHRENHEIT 451 in terms of choosing cast members for an adaptation, click the link and engage with OPTION A![][][]

THE TASKImagine that you’ve recently accomplished your dream of becoming a Hollywood casting director. More amazingly, you’ve been tasked with casting a character for a new adaptation of FAHRENHEIT 451! Take some time to think about who you would cast in the movie, and why. (For our purposes, you are free to choose any actress/actor/personality, living or dead.) To complete your press release, respond to the following prompts by using the “Leave a Reply” feature at the bottom of the page. For full credit, your responses must consist of complete sentences and demonstrate active engagement.

A) Who are you casting, and what character will she/he be playing? What about this individual makes her/him a good choice for the character?

B) Provide a photo of this actor/actress (a link to another website will work)! Then, describe the way(s) in which this individual matches the physical appearance of the character. Present an excerpt from the text (with page numbers!) that features a physical description of the character.

C) What are the defining personality traits of this character? Present an excerpt from the text (with page numbers!) and describe how it demonstrates the character’s true nature.

D) Identify a movie that features a character that has been miscast. What is the movie? Who is the actress/actor and what is the role? Why don’t you believe that this actress/actor is right for the role?

9 thoughts on “F451: Casting Call [Option A]

  1. A) I am casting Morgan Freeman as Professor Faber. Morgan Freeman is an incredibly gifted actor who has proven during his illustrious career that he is more than able play a wide variety of characters. Freeman’s performance in the Dark Knight Trilogy inspired me to cast him as Faber. In that movie series, Freeman plays Lucius Fox, the incredibly intelligent research head of Wayne enterprises and the man behind the advanced technology of Batman. This is similar to Faber’s development of the earpiece radio that he gives to Montag to talk to him. Intelligence is a recurring trait of Freeman’s characters. including God and Nelson Mandela. Faber, of course, is also very intelligent and technologically advanced.

    B) http://static.comicvine.com/uploads/original/11112/111120335/3244346-lucius+fox.jpg
    Faber is repeatedly described as looking “very old” (80). Morgan Freeman, while very young at heart, is on the older side. He also resembles Faber in that “his hair was white” (80). Also, both men have “white in…his cheeks.” (80). (Freeman has white facial hair.)

    to be continued…

    1. C) Faber, a former professor, is a very smart man. He is much smarter than most others. Unlike others, he thinks about what life had previously been like. He criticizes society, but for a long while keeps his thoughts to himself. Faber is very courageous to finally rebel against society by helping Montag. He proves he is willing to take risks in order to do what he thinks is right.

      D) I think it’s pretty obvious that Sofia Coppola was miscast bas Mary Corleone in The Godfather Part III. She just was not a good enough actor to play an important character in the one of the greatest film series of all time. The character, the daughter of such a strong character in mob boss Michael Corleone, deserved an actress that would deliver a strong performance. Sofia Coppola, coincidently the real-life daughter of the movie’s director, was not the right choice for the role.

  2. A) If I became the casting director for Fahrenheit 451, I would choose Evanna Lynch to play Clarisse. Evanna Lynch has a dreamy personality and that is how I imagine Clarisse to be. She is different.
    B) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evanna_Lynch
    On page 5 of Fahrenheit 451, Clarisse is described, “slender and milk-white, and in it was a kind of gentle hunger that touched over everything with a tireless curiosity…Her dress was white and it whispered.” Lynch is a very pale and her hair is a white-blonde. Her eyes are described on page 6 as, ” regarding Montag with eyes so dark and shining and alive that he felt he had said something quite wonderful.” Lynch’s eyes very bright, and look as though she always has something wonderful on her mind. Her appearance fits Clarisse perfectly.
    C) Clarisse is a very curious girl, she always asks questions to Montag, some personal and some not so personal. She talks about her uncle’s stories like they are the most amazing things she has ever heard. She didn’t belong in that time period- she belonged in the time when people talked to eachother and read interesting books. Yet, she always seems happy and there is something about her that seems like she is wondering about something. Her questions and her stories and personality cause Montag to change the way he sees his life.
    D) In The Spectacular Now, Shailene Woodley plays the main character, Aimee. I think she was miscast. In the book, Aimee is a lot different. Shailene represents Aimee a lot different than in the book. Aimee is a lot more shy in the book then Shailene represents, it might just be the script, but I believe it is Shailene. I like Shailene in most movies and am excited for The Fault In Our Stars, but I was not happy with the way she acted in the Spectacular Now.

  3. A) I would pick Michael Shannon to play the role of Beatty. I saw this actor in Boardwalk Empire, as well as Man of Steel. When I saw Man of Steel, I noticed he is able to capture the demeanor of an antagonist. He also can express a rigid and militaristic mood very well, something I imagine in Beatty also.

    I think Michael Shannon’s normal facial features would fit that of Beatty’s well. He has a rough appearance that could easily be accentuated to appear as a pinkish, fire inured face. He can also appear manly like Beatty acts in the book.

    C) With what acting I have seen so far from Mr. Shannon, I can say he is good at playing darker and more mysterious roles. Also, i have seen that in Boardwalk Empire, he is able to incite an uneasy feeling with his acting, just like Beatty puts Montag on edge by inciting that he knows his secrets. (for example pg 53 on)

    D) I think the main actor of Into the Wild Eli Hearsch was miscast. I dont object to the physical resemblance, because I thought that was done near perfectly. But I thought the acting was not accurate, because I saw Hearsch act more like a bluntly rebellious and almost arrongantly independent and opinionated young adult. I do imagine Chris McCandless being rebellious and independent, but in a more naturally subtle and kind way. I imagine Chris being more friendly and open with people and always looking to talk.

  4. a) I am casting Kristen Stewart as Mildred. I think Kristen Stewart makes a good Mildred because Mildred does not question anything and always seems kind of out of it. Kristen Stewart usually portrays people that don’t seem to question much and she also seems kind of out of it at times in movies.

    b) There isn’t a physical description for Mildred but she is described as “not caring” about if something was going on (page 13). She also tunes everybody out and never leaves her room because she’s in there all day watching TV with the seashells in her ears. Her face is described as being like a “snow covered island upon which rain might fall but it felt no rain.” I think this sentence means that she doesn’t really feel or show any emotions which is similar to how Kristen Stewart acts in many movies. http://medias.unifrance.org/medias/161/48/77985/format_page/kristen-stewart.jpg

    c) Some defining personality traits of Mildred are she is anti social and does not question anything about the world around her. She does not leave her room much and usually stays in there and watches / talks to the TV walls, she also wants to put a fourth wall in that would cost 1/3 of Montag’s yearly salary but she doesn’t seem to care about how expensive it is (page 20). Also, Mildred is meant to portray that average person in this book because she does not question anything and she doesn’t read, since it is against the law. Since the people do not read anything anymore, no one ever analyzes anything, they just accept for how it is, which is why many people do not know anything and find themselves only knowing a fact or two about a topic.

    d) A movie where I think a character was miscast was Selena Gomez in Springbreakers. Although I’ve never seen the movie, I don’t think Selena Gomez fits in that type of scene and I would not picture her in a movie like that considering she was just coming off of a show on Disney Channel.

  5. A) To fill the role of Captain Beatty, I chose Robert Downey Jr to play the part. Robert Downey Jr. has always took on the roles of rugged characters. He would be a good fit for the captain of a book burning squad. He also plays the roles of intelligent people, and Beatty has the interesting trait of being extremely well-read.

    Bradbury doesn’t go into detail about the appearance of Captain Beatty’s appearance, possibly to let the reader imagine what he looks like. The firemen are generally described as having ”black hair, black brows, a fiery face, and a blue-steel shaved but unshaved look” (Bradbury, 33). Downey has black hair and, in my opinion, a fiery face. I imagined that Beatty would be a worn out captain, such that of an army general. Downey has the worn out “leader” look and has played the role of old characters who are experienced in their work.

    C) Beatty definitely is a complex character with many intriguing characteristics. For a professional book burner, he is definitely more well-read then one might think. Beatty doesn’t have any trouble quoting old literature. This characteristic is tied into his intelligence and Downey has always played the role of very smart characters. Whether he is the engineer of Iron Man, or the detective in Sherlock Holmes, his characters know what they are doing. Another characteristic is his “villainous” side. Beatty definitely wanted Montag to believe that books are evil, but the extent of his belief that books indeed are, is unclear. There are multiple parts in this novel where Beatty shows his literary knowledge, and might of committed suicide at the end. I haven’t seen a movie where Downey plays a villain, but i think he would be able to because he is a good actor.

    D) Mark Wahlberg’s role in The Happening is definitely my choice for worlds-worst actor mismatch. Wahlberg, the actor that brought Stg. Dignam in the Departed to life, along with Ward from The Fighter, plays a high school teacher who is figuring out why trees are murdering people. The movie was, in my opinion, pretty bad, with multiple cliques and scientific fallacies, but this mismatch only makes it worse. In fact, he was nominated for the Golden Raspberry Award Worst Actor Award for his role in this movie, along with his work in Max Payne.

  6. A) Who are you casting, and what character will she/he be playing? What about this individual makes her/him a good choice for the character?

    I would cast Sean Bean as Captain Beatty. He is intense and he is a good actor. He is kind of scary and could be very good. He also dies in every movie

    B) Provide a photo of this actor/actress (a link to another website will work)! Then, describe the way(s) in which this individual matches the physical appearance of the character. Present an excerpt from the text (with page numbers!) that features a physical description of the character.

    “…faces were sunburnt by a thousand real and ten thousand imaginary fires, whose work flushed their cheeks and fevered their eyes. …their charcoal and soot colored brows and blueish ash smeared cheeks with a head shaven close; but their heritage showed.” (pg 33) Sean Bean is intense looking like one of these firemen. He doesn’t really have the right coloring, but that can be changed.

    C) What are the defining personality traits of this character? Present an excerpt from the text (with page numbers!) and describe how it demonstrates the character’s true nature.

    Beatty is really smart and well read while hiding his true nature and going against his beliefs.
    PG 107 “And you said, quoting, ‘Truth will come to light, murder will not be hid long'” This is a quote from literature. The only real connection between Beatty and Sean Bean is that they both look intense, but are actually nice and smart.

    D) Identify a movie that features a character that has been miscast. What is the movie? Who is the actress/actor and what is the role? Why don’t you believe that this actress/actor is right for the role?

    Russell Crowe in Les Miserables was definitely miscast. His acting very bad and not realistic. His singing was always off and he sang with little emotion.

  7. A. My choice to play Mildred’s less than interesting friends are not actresses; but reality t.v. stars. I would cast any of all the members of the reality t.v. franchise “Real Housewives of Orange County” (which airs on the Bravo Network) as these characters because most of them are totally conceded and only focused on themselves, as are Mrs. Phelps and Mrs. Bowels. Most of their lives are focused on having girl nights and talking about stuff that has no meaning what so ever. They are focused entirely on looks. They are awfully fake looking.
    B. http://www.bravotv.com/the-real-housewives-of-orange-county/photos
    “…So it was now, in his own parlor, with these woman twisting in their chairs under his gaze, lighting cigarettes blowing smoke, touching their sun-fiered and examining their blazing fingernails…” Pg 95, the Sieve and the Sand
    “…and vanished into the volcano’s mouth with martinis in their hand…he saw their Cheshire Cat smiles burning through the walls of the house, and now they were screaming at each other above the din.” Pg 93, the Sieve and the Sand
    C. Mrs. Phelps and Mrs. Bowels were not independent. They relied on their husbands to worry for them and to take care of them. They also were lacking in intelligent conversations and cared for few people other than themselves.
    “…Pete and I always said, no tears, nothing like that. It’s our third marriage each and we’re independent…He said , if I get killed off, you just go right ahead and don’t cry, but get married again, and don’t think of me.” pg 95
    “I voted last election, same as everyone, and I laid it on the line for President Noble. I think he’s one of the nicest looking men ever became president.” pg 96
    D. Russel Crow in the movie version of Les Mis was really, truly horrendous. He can’t sing at all and I don’t think he portrayed the character correctly.

  8. A) If i was to cast this movie I would chose Dennis Leary to play Captain Beatty. I thought long and hard about this one. I feel like Dennis Leary has the roll of Fire chief down pretty well due to his hit show ‘Rescue Me’. Leary is a very strong actor but can play a villain role very well. I think he would fit Captain Beatty very well.

    B) http://www.superiorpics.com/wallpaper/file/Denis_Leary_in_Rescue_Me_TV_Series_Wallpaper_3_800.jpg
    The book never truly gives Beatty a description other then mentioning the fire fighters are men with black hair and a fiery face ”Black hair, black brows, a fiery face” (Bradbury, 33). Beatty is a very good and bad man. This role is played well by Leary in ‘Rescue Me’.

    C) Captain Beatty is a character that in my opinion influences Guy to what he becomes. He shows Guy that he had a past experience with books and had a vast knowledge of them. At the same time he loves everything about being a firefighter and defends everything they do. He also mentions books as weapons and states they should be destroyed.

    D) My mis-cast would be Andrew Garfield in ‘Amazing Spider-Man’. I thought that Tobey Maguire played a perfect spider man. Garfield on the other hand was so much more less fit for the role and did not take to the role well. Though I do think Emma Stone was very good in that movie, I just never saw Garfield as the right fit.

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