Thursday, 7 November 2013


Just as the uproar over Ben Affleck nabbing the role of Batman was starting to die down, the lineup for one of the most hotly-anticipated movies of next year caused a new wave of controversy. Fans and critics alike were shocked to hear that relative unknowns Dakota Johnson and Charlie Hunnam saw off fierce competition to bag the leads in the film adaptation of 50 Shades of Grey. Producer Dana Brunetti turned to Twitter in attempt to silence the storm of internet outrage, but the praise and protests continue to make the news.

Luckily movie makers are no strangers to controversy, and are frequently accused of miscasting fictional characters fans have come to love.
Bridget Jones’s Diary is a perfect example. Independent and witty yet unlucky in love, Jones was the flawed heroine British women could identify with. She made it OK to sing along to soppy love songs, enjoy a cheeky glass of wine and don huge figure-flattering pants, like the contour-defining shapewear at Given our affection for the character, it was perhaps predictable that critics and Bridget-lovers fumed when size four Texan RenĂ©e Zellweger was cast. However, Zellweger’s portrayal turned out to be funny, likeable and every inch Bridget Jones, even bagging the actress an Oscar nomination. 
Just as Zellweger came to embody Bridget, it might seem surprising to remember that Heath Ledger was once thought to be lacking the substance necessary to play Batman’s arch-nemesis The Joker in The Dark Knight. Despite these criticisms, his definitive portrayal led to a posthumous Oscar. However, the franchise caused a stir again when former Disney star Anne Hathaway was cast as Catwoman in The Dark Knight Rises. The actress threw off her good girl image with an acrobatic performance that firmly silenced critics.
Fans of fictional characters often have vivid ideas about they look and act, making criticism and disappointment over film versions inevitable. Johnson and Hunnam may have to work hard to win critics over, while Affleck faces the daunting task of proving himself worthy of the Batman cowl after the success of Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy. However, it's worth remembering that while these choices may be controversial now, we could be looking at future Oscar winners.

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