Saturday, October 6, 2012

Casting Joss Whedon's upcoming SHEILD TV show

The SHIELD television series is still months (a year?) away and we've been salivating at any update. On ( they announced that ABC is casting for a few parts and gave quick character descriptions for each.

I wanted to get in on all of the excitement by casting these roles. First, lets see the character descriptions that gave us.

SKYE: This late-20s woman sounds like a dream: fun, smart, caring and confident – with an ability to get the upper hand by using her wit and charm.

AGENT GRANT WARD: Quite the physical specimen and “cool under fire,” he sometimes botches interpersonal relations. He’s a quiet one with a bit of a temper, but he’s the kind of guy that grows on you.

AGENT ALTHEA RICE: Also known as “The Calvary,” this hard-core soldier has crazy skills when it comes to weapons and being a pilot. But her experiences have left her very quiet and a little damaged.

AGENT LEO FITZ and AGENT JEMMA SIMMONS: These two came through training together and still choose to spend most of their time in each other’s company. Their sibling-like relationship is reinforced by their shared nerd tendencies – she deals with biology and chemistry, he’s a whiz at the technical side of weaponry.

Okay - now for my candidates.

Paula Garces as Skye.
Paula is a young woman who started as a child actress and did a number of films before ending up on one of the most intense television shows ever: The Shield (huh...a cast member of The Shield starring on SHIELD? Nice right?). Paula can play "fun, smart, caring and confident" and brings a lot of acting experience to the role. Plus, she was in the Harold & Kumar movies so she knows former Whedon alum, Neil Patrick Harris (Is he an assassin? Is that why he has three names?)

Skye isn't AGENT Skye so Paula is believable playing a former cop or soldier or intelligence agent who is a trainee or recent graduate of SHEILD. Paula Garces is the total package for this project and I've met her at Comic Con so I can tell you she's a sweetheart who is always nice to her fans.

Michael Kenneth Williams as Agent Grant Ward
He's played Roberts on "Alias," a Harlem Bystander in "The Incredible Hulk" and was Professor Marshall Kane on "Community" and those are just the roles I remember seeing. Michael's also done work on a lot of fantastic films and television shows like "The Road" and "Boardwalk Empire."

We need someone who "sometimes botches interpersonal relations" and has "a temper" but is " the kind of guy that grows on you" and Michael fits the bill perfectly. What makes Michael great is that he can make you feel physically threatened or comforted in the same scene. I don't want to make a direct comparison to Mr. T but Michael is the kind of guy whose glare can make you wet yourself but whose smile is infectious. And he has a big scar on his face that screams 'bad ass' and can be a great part of the character's backstory.

Gina Carano as Agent Althea Rice
Gina Carano was Mallory Kane in the film "Haywire." But more importantly, before that she was a successful MMA fighter. If you haven't seen Haywire, check it out - the fighting is amazing. If you have seen Haywire, you know Gina Carano can pull off the description of the character: "Also known as “The Calvary,” this hard-core soldier has crazy skills when it comes to weapons and being a pilot. But her experiences have left her very quiet and a little damaged."

Gina's charisma and natural fighting ability would serve the character. She wouldn't need fight training, just the way she moves tells you that she could take you down in a few seconds. And with her on board, the fight scenes would have less stunt doubles and look more realistic.

Craig Horner as Agent Leo Fitz
Craig Horner was the main character, Richard Cypher on the short-lived show, Legend of the Seeker. As the title character, Richard got to fully develop a character - from going from an immature young man to being a champion, falling in love despite the many obstacles, defeating the big bad, and having to play second string as someone else inherited the champion title. He's very versatile and he can pull off being nerdy in a support role.

Genevieve Padalecki  as Agent Jemma Simmon
Genevieve was Ruby on "Supernatural" and was the main character, Kris Furillo on "Wildfire." Genevieve has also had the opportunity to completely develop a character and has shown great range in doing so. She's also equally good on a family show like Wildfire and a genre show like Supernatural. Genevieve can play nerdy when called upon and I can see her and Craig Horner having a sibling-like relationship.

Despite the face that Agent Leo Fitz and Agent Jemma Simmons are presented together and seem to have support-only roles, remember that SHIELD agents aren't helpless and both Craig and Genevieve are believable fighting back. These are actors who can play unassuming roles and believably take down the occasional bad guy if called upon.

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