Cat Winters had a chat with us about who she’d like to cast as actors and actresses when ‘The Cure For Dreaming’ makes it on to the big screens. Fingers crossed a big shot director makes this happen soon!
Because I wrote ‘The Cure for Dreaming’ without picturing any particular movie actors playing my characters, it’s a somewhat strange and surreal concept to assign real faces to the imaginary people in my mind. However, as a lifelong film buff who plastered the walls of her own teen bedroom in vintage movie posters, I love envisioning future film adaptations of my books.
Here are the performers I would cast in the lead roles of The Cure for Dreaming, my 1900-set tale of hypnotism, suffragists, and Gothic horror.
Isabelle Fuhrman as Olivia Mead
Fuhrman has the right looks and the acting chops to play my raven-haired seventeen-year-old suffragist whose life dramatically changes when she’s hypnotized into seeing the world the way it truly is. The Hunger Games showed Fuhrman’s tough side (she played the tribute Clove), and toughness is absolutely necessary for a Victorian girl who’s being pushed into oppressive situations. Plus Fuhrman’s early performance in the horror film Orphan shows she’s capable of handling the creepier aspects of my story.
Antoine-Olivier Pilon as Henri Reverie
The requirements to play my eighteen-year-old hypnotist character are threefold. He needs to have (1) a pair of captivating blue eyes, (2) the ability to speak in a Montreal French accent, and (3) the talent to play both a confident stage performer and a young man who’s emotionally unraveling from all of the pressures placed upon him (sometimes, when Olivia views Henri under hypnosis, she sees him literally unraveling). Rising young star Antoine-Olivier Pilon not only has the requisite hypnotic blue eyes and the acting talent (he starred in the Cannes Film Festival darling Mommy), but he also happens to hail from Montreal. C’est magnifique!
Joaquin Phoenix as Dr. Walter Dr. Mead
Olivia’s father is so desperate to keep his daughter from turning into her mother—a woman who put herself before her family—that he hires Henri Reverie to cure Olivia of her “unladylike” ambitions to attend college and to be able to vote for president. Over the years, Phoenix has shown a penchant for playing strange, touching, and unsettling characters. If anyone could embody the role of a thirtysomething Victorian dentist who’s half mad, half terribly lonely, I think Joaquin Phoenix is the actor for the job.
Lilla Crawford as Frannie Harrison
She’s a bit younger than everyone else in this dream cast, but Crawford looks nearly exactly how I imagine Olivia’s best friend, Frannie. She’s a girl who stands by Olivia’s side throughout her strange and troubling hypnosis experience, yet she’s not afraid to call Olivia out when she’s flirting with trouble or not acting like herself. Frannie even wears her hair in a braid, and Crawford rocks the braided-hair look as Little Red Riding Hood in Into the Woods.
Douglas Booth as Percy Acklen
Olivia’s first major crush is rich boy Percy, son of a prominent judge who’s known for his newspaper opinion pieces against women’s suffrage. Perhaps selecting Booth to play a handsome young wealthy fellow is a bit of typecasting (see his roles in Romeo & Juliet and The Riot Club), but I think he’d bring something interesting to the part of a young man who’s trying with all of his might not to turn into his father . . . but failing miserably at being his own man.
Tavi Gevinson as Kate Frye
I love watching Tavi Gevinson in interviews because she’s so incredibly articulate and smart. I’d actually cast her as the lead role in my first novel, In the Shadow of Blackbirds, but I think she’d also stand out as Kate, one of Olivia’s fellow suffragist friends. The role isn’t a big one, but Gevinson’s charm and smarts would allow the character to soar (and Kate Frye literally takes off into the air at one point—at least in the eyes of a hypnotized Olivia).
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- Find out more about Cat Winters here.
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