So, here we are again, my friends; back with another post. I’d been working on a few other things to post for you all, but this idea presented itself and, frankly, it was a lot more fun. So, as most of you know, I’m a huge fan of Neil Gaiman and his work and have been ever since I read American Gods almost ten years ago. So, of course, when I heard of HBO’s plan to produce an onscreen adaptation of one of my favorite books of all time I began to speculate, on my own, who might fill the roles of the characters I had come to love and, well, love to loathe. Yeah I know, this casting is not as likely to happen, but this cast would be, to me, perfect.
Shall we get started? I think so… And now…MY DREAM CAST!!
Shadow Moon – as played by Jason Momoa
Shadow is described as kind of dark but kind of not (I believe the actual description is “Cream and Coffee Colored”) He’s a ex-convict who has the “don’t fuck with me” look as well as the kind of heart that is vulnerable, uncertain, and empty enough to be melancholy. Having seen Jason as Khal Drogo in HBO’s Game of Thrones, we know that he can do “I’ll fucking kill you if I have to” as well as emotional enough to love his wife so much that her death leaves him feeling empty inside and then a mix between excited and disturbed enough to be shaken by her presence.
Wednesday/Odin – as played by Jeff Bridges
He’s been “The Dude”, He’s been Kevin Flynn, he’s been Rooster Cogburn, and he’s been Obadiah Stane. If these roles alone don’t prove that he has what it takes to play the vulgar, manipulative, charismatic, and ambitious con-man and Norse Pantheon All-Father who hires Shadow to be his muscle and help him recruit for a crazy insane war.
Laura Moon – as played by Candice Accola
Laura Moon, Shadow’s Wife, dies in a car accident at the beginning of the book. Due to a chain of events that I won’t spoil for those of you who haven’t read it yet, she comes back from the dead as Shadows killer guardian. Snapping the necks or brutally ripping apart the bodies of those who would hurt her still living husband, she still holds just enough emotion to tug at Shadow’s heartstrings, even going so far as to call him a man-shaped hole in the world. Watching Candice play a teenage sometimes-homicidal vampire on the CW’s The Vampire Diaries as well as listening to her voice, she seems to me to be the obvious choice to play the only woman allowed to call Shadow “Puppy”.
Low-Key Lyesmith/Loki/Mr. World – as played by Kevin Bacon
Low-Key Lyesmith was a man of many faces: Philosopher, Convict, Driver, Co-Conspirator, Cold Bloded killer, God in Spook’s clothing. Reading the Novel, I came to the realization that Low-Key was actually Loki at the same time that Shadow did. Having seen the many faces Kevin wore in the X-Men: First Class movie, I’d love to see him wear the mantle of the Asgardian Liar.
Hinzelmann – Ian Holm
Hinzelmann is the little kind old man from Lakeside who drives Shadow around in his old clunker “Tessie”. He seems a whimsical old man, telling stories about his family and the history of the town. Unbeknownst to the town, he is Hinzelmann the Germanic Kobold who has been sacrificing young girls of the town year after year. I’ve been a fan of Sir Ian since his performance in The Fifth Element and even more so after his turn as Bilbo Baggins in the Lord of the Rings films, seeing him go from sweet old man to scary “What the fuck just happened to his face, holy shit is he going to eat Frodo?” guy, I honestly think that he would be perfect for this role.
Moving on… Samantha Blackcrow – as played by Allison Scagliotti
Sam has fire, Sam has spunk, Sam is awesome! From the moment she’s introduced hitching a ride with Shadow to the point where she plants a kiss on him that tells everyone else in the room to rightly “Fuck Off”, Samantha Blackcrow has been one of my favorite characters in the entire book. Anyone who’s watched the hit show Warehouse 13 and has seen the character of Claudia Donovan can see that Allison is basically playing Samantha Blackcrow with a really kick ass job who got the hell away from Lakeside and maybe changed her name after everything!
Easter – As played by Christina Hendricks
Easter is sweet, sassy, voluptuous, and has a matronly-yet-sexy-as-hell energy to her. At least, that’s how I interpreted her description in the novel. What? Isn’t that what you got too? After listening to the full cast audiobook version of this (which I highly recommend), and watching her performances in the awesome cult series Firefly (Yo/Saf/Brig anyone?) as well as her voice acting roles in All Star Superman and Family Guy. (And I can’t be the only one who remembers her from MTV’s Undressed) I mean, come on, look at her!! She has the look, the presence and the voice to absolutely kill in this role.
Bilquis as played by Monica Bellucci
YES! YES! I know, Bilquis only appears all of twice in the book, but that doesn’t mean that she shouldn’t appear in the film and be played by someone amazing. Bilquis is sexy, sultry, and will eat you alive…literally! (If you haven’t gotten to that part of the book yet, you will and your mouth will DROP!) Watch the Matrix Reloaded and the Matrix Revolutions (yes, I know of what I ask, just bare with me here) and check out Monica Bellucci as the exile program Persephone and note the raw sexual energy just oozing from her at every word or glance. Got it? Good. Let’s move on.
Mad Sweeny – as played by Dennis Leary
Mad Sweeny is many things: a loudmouth, a drunkard, and a gambler among them. He’s one other thing as well: a leprechaun. Who better to portray the loudmouth redhead who gets into a barroom brawl with Shadow than someone who is used to playing loudmouth crazy people. (at least, as far as I’ve seen, anyway) I think he’d be absolutely perfect.
Czernobog (and later, Belobog) – played by Mickey Rourke
The entire time I read this book, his was the face I saw and the voice I heard when I read Czernobog (and later, Belobog). Ever since I heard his Russian accent in Iron Man 2, whatever doubt I had about him as this character vanished! Plus, I want to see him play checkers with Shadow.
Mr. Nancy/Anansi – Robert Guillaume
I first remember him from the 80’s sitcom Soap (I am NOT old), and then from his role in Benson. But everyone remembers him the most as the mystical advisor to King Mufassa in The Lion King, Rafiki. Hearing him pull of the accent and knowing he has the ability to play a bit of a smart-ass jokester that can be deadly serious if need be. I can’t think of anyone else, really, to play Mr. Nancy. (And can make appearances in Anansi Boys) I mean, seriously, can you see anyone else in the checkered suit and lemon yellow gloves, rocking the patios? No? I didn’t think so. NEXT!
Mr. Ibis/Thoth -Tony Shaloub
Okay, so I’ve seen Monk. I LOVE that show. It’s awesome. So when I read Mr. Ibis and his mannerisms, I thought of Tony Shaloub immediately. I can’t see anyone else playing the calm but fidgety ancient Egyptian undertaker with a penchant for storytelling. Gee, I can’t imagine why! Speaking of ancient Egyptian undertakers…
Mr. Jacquel/Anubis – Idris Elba
I really could not think of anyone else to play the weigher of hearts/souls than this man. He has the look, the voice, and the damned moxy to don the role of the God turned mortician/coroner. Plus, his first appearance is as an actual talking black jackal. Who doesn’t want to see that??
Bast – Rosario Dawson
Okay, I’m going to be honest here: I haven’t seen her in nearly enough things, but everything I have seen her in, I love her in. She definitely has the look to give life to the cat goddess that lays claim to Shadow during his time in Cairo. Seeing her performance during his dream sequence would likely be amazing!
Media – Amanda Palmer
After seeing the voice of the Dresden Dolls and actual wife to Neil Gaiman pose as the character in the 2013 Literary Pin Up Calendar, there is no one I would rather see look out from a television at Shadow and as “Hey, you ever wanted to see Lucy’s tits?” Followed by a quick redition of “Coin Operated Boy” (Maybe)
Chad Mulligan – Nathan Fillion
If there is anyone who can be the confident, friendly, somewhat bumbling chief of police in the sleepy town of Lakeside; it’s Mr Fillion here. I know the ladies will love seeing him in a police uniform, and he would fill it (and the role) out quite well.
Mr. Town – Jack Coleman
Okay, so, in this case, all I have is his role in Heroes to go on here, (and by Heroes, I only mean the first season as far as he is concerned) but I can’t see anyone else as the charismatic, but mysterious, and slightly infuriating agent/errand boy to the new Gods. Trust me, the dude can do smarmy like it’s his job.
Mammoth God (Voice) – Keith David
You know him as Goliath from Gargoyles, as The Arbiter from the Halo series, and as The Shadow Man/ Dr. Facilier from The Princess and the Frog. He has a penchant for playing Dark or Ancient things. So who better than to play this forgotten God who enters Shadows dreams to share pertinent information that might not make sense at the time but seriously comes in handy later.
Technical Boy – as played by Jonah Hill
So last up is my pick for the God of Modern Technology. The last couple of times I read this book I could only ever hear Jonah Hill’s voice as this character. He’s got the chops to give the snark, insecurity, and overblown sense of entitlement we’d come to expect from this character. He also still looks just young enough to play the role. Seeing him turn a certain Old God into roadkill would be both satisfying and rage inducing.
So there it is, friends: my pick for what I would consider to be the principle cast for this series. More characters would of course be brought in, but (for me at least) these are the ones worth paying attention to. Did I miss anyone?
Do you think I got some or all of the casting wrong?
Sound off! Let me know what you think.
Until my next post, friends (and hopefully you won’t have as long of a wait this time), be good, be safe, be awesome to one another, and don’t let the muggles get you down!