Today I'm supposed to talk about what my dream casting for a new adaptation of Pride and Prejudice would be; not by finding certain actors, but just talking about what I think they should be like. It's a very good idea but I must admit at this time I do not have much enthusiasm for writing about it. Sooo I'm going to be kind of minimalist and just talk about five of the characters.
Also, I'm going to be boring and not include any pictures. We're supposed to be picturing the characters for ourselves, after all. ;)
We must start with her, mustn't we? Let's see now. My perfect Lizzy Bennet would be between the ages of 19 and 24, not very tall in height (Mr. Bennet refers to her as "my little Lizzy", and Lydia is the tallest of the family; her figure is also not supposed to be perfect and in S&S JA mentions height as an 'advantage'-- those are some things that brought me to that conclusion), have dark brown hair and eyes, and be on the lighter side but not skin-and-bones like Keira Knightley. Her eyes really should be striking, and very expressive. Her face in general should be expressive when she's animated, so that it's interesting to watch her talk and display emotions. She needs to have a very good smile. She should be pretty but not perhaps in a very usual way. (Jane should be more regularly pretty.) Like, the more you get used to her looks the more you like them.
As for acting... the actress herself needs to admire Jane Austen and Elizabeth Bennet, because I really think that makes a big difference as to how an actor portrays a character. I really have hardly anything to complain about when it comes to Jennifer Ehle's acting... there are a few lines I might say in a bit of a different way if it were me, but... yeah. So basically she needs to be as good as Jennifer Ehle and that might be difficult. ;)
Heh, heh, heh. ;) Okay, so. Yes, Colin Firth made an excellent Mr. Darcy. Buuut I think it could be improved upon, I really do, and please don't kill me, fellow P&P95 fans. He does need to smile from time to time, at least in a small sort of way, and maybe say things so that those who have an ear for a more dry kind of humor would recognize it as such. (Because he CAN be funny sometimes... more on that if I EVER get my post about Mr. Darcy written!) To be honest, I'm not exactly sure what he should look like. I often have a harder time picturing male characters. The book does describe him as tall and handsome, and at first everyone decides he's handsomer than Mr. Bingley. So he needs to be those things. (Not overly tall, though. Just on the taller side.) He has to have dark hair, okay, he just does.
I think a trap most of the actors fall into is that of being stoic. Darcy should not be stoic. His displayed emotions should be subtle, yes, but that is not the same thing. For instance, he needs to be able to look offended at jabs Mr. Bingley makes at him. He needs to look like he's trying to hide what he's feeling rather than like he's not feeling anything at all. (Cough cough, David Rintoul, cough.) Does that make any sense? He should be able to maintain a feeling-awkward-in-social-situations-and-not-having-a-good-time look that can be misinterpreted as proud, but only to people who are predisposed to take it that way.
I really don't want to ramble on all day about it, though... let's make this into a discussion. What do YOU think? Then I can tell you whether or not I agree, and you'll know what I think. :P
Jane needs to have that aura of quiet sweetness about her which only certain actresses can actually pull off. She should have a classically pretty face-- one that could be considered beautiful now and then, haha, so as to avoid the Susannah Harker argument. ;) She does not need to have blond hair, in fact I wouldn't mind seeing that stereotype broken and giving her a dark brown. I'm particularly partial to blue eyes with dark hair, but it wouldn't break my heart if that didn't happen. ;)
The Other Bennet Sisters
I'll just group them into one here and not be too detailed... basically, I'd like them to all LOOK like they could be sisters, and not be way older than they're supposed to be. (No, this really is not a criticism of P&P95. Shhh. Don't look at me like that.) Other than that, have them act exactly like they do in the book (and it doesn't seem like it's very hard to figure out for them) and I'll be happy. Mary should be plain, but they don't need to go overboard with that. I think something like giving her complexion problems would be accurate.
One more... whom should I choose...
Emilia Fox came close to the mark on this one, but she didn't quite make it... for me, Georgiana's always been a character who is subtly intriguing, and I would want a new adaptation to show that. They should not, however, try to make her different personality-wise. None of this bubbly-perky stuff. Also, she should look like she could be Mr. Darcy's sister... and she needs to look like she's about eighteen, I think. Yes, she's supposed to be sixteen, but she's supposed to look and act mature, and after all, this is a girl who was thinking about getting married when she was fifteen-- and not the Lydia type, either. She should be a little taller than Lizzy, but not overly so. (To match the book. ;) )
Now, it's your turn... how do you think these characters should be portrayed? What about some others?