Hypothetically casting Earths in Space

I’ve been busy lately.EIS-v1-front-cover-resized.jpg

Both my books are available in print for the first time, and I’ve released a new edition of the Earths in Space e-book.

You see, while proofing the paperback of something I had written a year earlier, I realized I could improve the writing with minor tweaks throughout. I didn’t alter any plot points, just cleaned up some of the prose. That ebook is now available at Amazon and Smashwords with its nice new cover. Distribution will expand once I finish disposing of the original BookBaby edition.

Just for fun now, I’ll play a game called “Let’s cast the hypothetical Earths in Space movie or television series.” Sounds like a swell time indeed.

I never write with a cast in mind, so I’m making all this up as I type.

For those of you just tuning in, Earths in Space follows a team of explorers traveling through a universe full of alternate human civilizations. Their whimsical leader, Amena, just wants to discover something amazing in outer space, but she faces disappointment upon finding a disturbing lack of aliens.

So let’s start with Amena, an asexual archer who’s in love with discovery and can’t resist helping people in need.

Gillian Jacobs (Community) would be fantastic as Amena. She’d bring the right amount of silliness to pull off Amena’s eccentricities, and she has a wonderfully expressive face; I could picture her reacting to a wide range of alternate civilizations and assorted oddness.

(I wanted to post pictures, but then I realized I didn’t want to violate copyright law. Oh bother.)

Now onto Kaden, a martial arts expert, perfect gentleman, and lifelong best friend to Amena. They grew up together in a rural town. He shares her heroic streak, so I’m going to go with none other than Superman himself, Henry Cavill. I intensely disliked Man of Steel, but Cavill was great. If you can play Superman, you can play Kaden.

Sela is easy to cast. She’s the most brilliant inventor of our time, though sometimes inspiration strikes faster than she can work. She’s also physically tiny, and if Veronica Mars proved anything, it’s that no one plays tiny smart people better than Kristen Bell.

Gilmore is more of a challenge. He’s an arrogant engineer who is pleased to grace the group with his expertise, and he’s got an unrequited thing for Amena. I wouldn’t go so far as saying this grump has “a heart of gold,” but he should be likeable enough. My hunch is Jeremy Renner (Avengers) could do great stuff with the role.

Mariana is a brutally honest master detective who takes nothing on faith, and she’s rather terse. Another challenging casting decision, but I’m thinking Gina Torres (Firefly) might be the right fit. She needs to get back on a spaceship, anyway.

On to Ballard now, an ex-Navy SEAL who’s ex for a reason and sees each new world as a potential threat. Ballard could be a tough role, because this is the guy the rest of the characters detest. But audiences certainly wouldn’t hate Enver Gjokaj (Dollhouse), who has the skill to portray the right mix of paranoia and competency.

Jem is an astounding young acrobat with a tendency to alternate between bravery and cowardice. Willa Holland, maybe? She’s done great work as the sometimes-troubled younger sister in Arrow. I think she’d do just fine aboard The Patrick Henry.

And then there’s Whit, the filthy rich former physician and current amateur astronomer who bankrolls the team and has a tendency to get lost in his own head. I could see Alexis Denisof in the part, even if he is slimmer than I had pictured. In Angel, he showed he could play a broken man in one storyline and comedic relief in another. That’s what’s needed for Whit.

Finally, for Amena’s sociopathic opposite number, Onella, I’d like another Angel alum, Amy Acker. She’s a bit younger than I envisioned the character, but have you seen Angel? She needs to be in more stuff, and she’d be great as a formerly whimsical adventurer turned disillusioned villain.

Clearly, I watch a lot of Joss Whedon shows.

So, off the top of my head, that’s how I’d hypothetically cast Earths in Space today. Tomorrow, I might have some different ideas. In a real situation, I’d love to include talented unknowns, because I know many, many are out there (including several friends from my theatre days).

If you’ve read Where Are the Little Green Men?, what do you think? Who would you cast?

What? You haven’t read it yet? (Cough! Cough!)