Thursday, May 1, 2014

Howl's Moving Castle Dreamcast

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One of my favorite books is Howl's Moving Castle, by Dianna Wynne Jones.  Several years ago, Hayao Miyazaki produced an anime adaption of the book, which is quite enjoyable- but unfortunately not very faithful to the book.
Even though the anime was enjoyable to watch, I would love to see a live-action film that is closer to the original plot of the book.  If there ever was such a movie, these are the people I'd like to see in it.  :D

I hope you enjoy!  If you've read the book, let me know what you think!

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I chose this actress mostly for her looks.  The only role I've seen her in is Cousin Rose from Downton Abbey.  That character- I might add- is nothing like the character of Sophie Hatter.  However, she seems to have the right sort of look about her.  Young, innocent, yet spirited and beautiful.  
To be honest, casting Sophie was hard.  If you have any other suggestions, please let me know!  I'm still open to consideration.

UPDATE:  As of March, 2015, since watching Lily James in her role as Cinderella, I am now much more sure that she would be good for the role of Sophie Hatter.  With her willful spunk from Downton Abbey mixed with her naive sweetness from Cinderella, I think she'd do quite well.


Since Sophie spends the majority of the book cursed to look like an old woman, Maggie Smith would be the real star of the show.  I chose her because I really like her as an actress.  She is famous for such roles as Cousin Violet from Downton Abbey, and Minerva MacGonnigal from Harry Potter.  Not to mention, if you look at them the right way, she and Lily James resemble each other.... slightly.  Maybe.  Or it could be just me.  ;)


Howl was another hard character to cast.  No one quite looked right... until I found pictures of Bradley James with long hair.  Then I suddenly remembered his cockey, obnoxious, but endearing portrayal of Arthur from BBC's Merlin.  Add a heavy dose of charm, and I think that he could play the part of Howl decently.  Though once again, if you have other suggestions, let me know!


I think the only thing I've seen Freddie Highmore in is the movie August Rush.  But he seems like a thoughtful, studious young man who could play Michael.

the voice of

Billy Crystal voiced Calcifer in the anime version.  He did it so well that I wouldn't imagine casting anyone else for the part.


Martha Hatter is the youngest of the three Hatter siblings, and is said to be the prettiest.  Also, being the youngest of three in a fairy-tale kingdom, everyone knows that she is the most likely to succeed.  However, Martha has different plans in mind...
Emma Watson, I hear, is considered one of the prettiest actresses today.  She has a smart, kind look about her that seems perfect for Martha.


Lettie Hatter, the middle child of the Hatter Family, is described to be nearly pretty enough to rival her sister Martha, but unlike her younger sibling, she has more ambitious, adventurous plans in mind.  Though she is stubborn and insistent on her way at times, she is very kind and loyal toward both Sophie and Martha.
I thought it would be nice to include some lesser-known actors and actresses in the cast, hence my decision on Miss Hiddleston.  Though she has yet to gain any great fame, she is the younger sister of one of my favorite actors, Tom Hiddleston.


Though she is the mother of Lettie and Martha, and the adopted mother of Sophie, Fanny Hatter is said to be young and pretty yet, and still looking for more chances in life.  
Yet another casting choice from Downton Abbey, but she seemed right for the part.


I've been fond of Cate Blanchett for some time, ever since seeing The Lord of the Rings.  She is quite beautiful, and plays a wonderful "magical woman", as evidenced by her performance as Galadriel.  And look at her!  Does she not look like a woman who could destroy you, if she pleased?


Wizard Sulliman, a friend and fellow countryman of Howl's, is described as having a charming, craggy face.  After some thought, I remembered David Tennant, who looks like he could play a good Sulliman.


I've seen James McAvoy in X-Men First Class, and The Chronicles of Narnia.  He has that certain look about him... handsome, goodwilled, but with a slightly hotty and sarcastic attitude, much like Prince Justin in the books.

(SPOILERS:  for the odd bit of the book where the character Percival, who is made of Justin and Sulliman combined, I thought that they could use CGI to map their facial features together.  END SPOILERS)



In her performances in Pride and Prejudice, and The Importance of Being Earnest, Judi Dench makes it clear that she plays an excellent, imposingly grand woman, thus making her perfect to play Howl's dearest, (if feared), mentor.  

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-Rayne Speryll

(DISCLAIMER:  I do not own Howl's Moving Castle.  This cast list is only a fan-cast, made out of love for the book.  It is by no means official, nor is it approved by any of the actors listed.)


  1. Hmm . . . I'm really not sure about Lily James as Sophie . . . I don't know anything about her (obviously), and going by looks, Sophie's hair should be more reddish . . . IDK. I'm also not sure about your pick for Wizard Howl, but you probably know what you're talking about. I do like your choice for the Witch of the Waste and Wizard Sulliman, though.

    As a side note, I just watched Howl's Moving Castle (the anime) yesterday. There were several places (ok, more than several) where I was like "What? What happened to the book this was based on?" But I'd heard it was going to be different, and so, taken on its own, I really liked it.

    1. I know what you mean about Howl and Sophie. To be honest, I'm not entirely convinced of those two choices either. But I'm more confident in Howl than I am for Sophie. :) If you know of anyone else for the two parts, by all means, let me know!

      And about that anime, I agree with you. As a stand alone movie, it's pretty good. Perhaps a little confusing, but good. I was disappointed, though, that they cut out Wizard Sulliman, Prince Justin, and Percival. Granted, they had Madame Sulliman, who was like Sulliman and Penstemmon combined, but she wasn't quite the same.

      What was your favorite part?

    2. I definitely will.

      Madame Sulliman . . . I was possibly more upset about that change than any other change. She seemed so almost-evil, what she was doing to Howl. I know she was kind of justified, of course, but still. I do agree that I was disappointed by how much they cut.

      My favorite part? Probably the part where Sophie's trying to get Howl to stay where it's safe, or to run, and Howl says no, because he wants to protect her. Though the scene where he's sending her out and he gives her the ring also made me very happy for some reason.

    3. Yeah, those parts are good. :) I also liked her first morning int he castle, making breakfast.
      "Here's another curse; may all your bacon burn!"

    4. Yes, that was a good part too. One of the more accurate-to-the-book bits.

  2. So Arthur has magic in this cast? Epic! :-P
    Feared mentor? :-P I think I know something about that. Mistress El'ye, from one of my novel ideas (Loyalties, and Generations), who is sort of the head Ranger, is sort of mysterious and wise, but her wisdom is questionable--perhaps she's really just insane and has a ridiculous amount of luck, or doesn't ever really know and is just really good at guessing? ;-P

  3. Not only would he have magic, but he'd be one of the most powerful wizards there is! :D

    Mistress El'ye Sounds like an interesting character! I'd love to read about her some time.

    1. Sorry, I tried to do this a moment ago and then closed the window by accident! Grrr.
      It just seems sort of odd to me, probably 'cause I've only seen him in "Merlin." :-P What if Arthur had magic, and Merlin and Gaius had to teach him how to use it? That would be pretty cool... ;-P
      She is! Of course, she has a fit every time I try to develop her character. She likes seeming mysterious and keeping everyone in awe of her. I'll work on getting the excerpts from the novels she appears in up on my blog, but I can't make any promises... she might decide to be difficult! :-P

  4. I LOVE THIS SO MUCH! I've been thinking so much about who could possibly play Howl. One problem: Lettie the middle sister is the prettiest. "Lettie was the one everyone said was the most beautiful", (Jones 1). That's why everyone went to see "Lettie" in the bakery ( Otherwise lovely cast!

    1. Thank you! I'm very glad you like it. And thank you for pointing that error out- I must have got them switched around in my mind! The fact that they disguised themselves as each other probably didn't help either... ;)

  5. I loove your casting choices and it baffles me why there isn't a live action film yet. Howl is the most difficult to cast for sure. For Sophie I'd love to see Saiorse Ronan, she looks more mature and is an eexcellent actress. Since Sophie is an old soul, a responsible type, but also a little fiery... Saiorse would be perfect and wouldn't be outshone by Emma Watson. For Howl it's important to choose an actor that has great chemistry with her regardless of whether he's blonde or not :)

    1. I think you're right, Saiors Ronan would make a wonderful Sophie! I wasn't familiar with her before, but after looking up pictures, I see that she has just the right look. Thanks for the suggestion!