Actors Who Have Shared Same Iconic Roles In These Popular Movies & TV Shows
The entertainment industry has been here for more than a few decades already. Since its inception, it has done a pretty good job doing what it was made to do – to entertain. This, of course, is thanks to the many films and TV shows released over the years. Now, besides the filmmakers and producers making investments in these projects behind the scenes, another factor behind these hits would be the people in front of the camera – the actors.
Whenever an actor’s name is mentioned, many of us undoubtedly associate them with the on-screen characters we most know them for. Still, that doesn’t mean they’re the only ones who had the chance to portray these characters. Besides the cases where actors get recast or replaced at the last minute, the industry is no stranger to reboots and remakes, and because of that, one character can have several iterations, each done by a different actor. Well then, without further ado, let’s take a look at the stars who have shared the same roles at some point in their careers.
Daenerys Targaryen – Game Of Thrones
At this point, it’s no secret that the Game of Thrones TV series has garnered an impressive degree of recognition from people around the world. Even people who haven’t watched a single episode can probably name at least one character and cite a popular quote from the show. One such actress that is often associated with her Game of Thrones persona would undoubtedly be Emilia Clarke.
While her role as the Mother of Dragons, Daenerys Targaryen, did become her breakout role in the acting business, it took a while before Clarke landed the part. In fact, the show was almost close to having a different actress for Daenerys’ role. In 2009, Tamzin Merchant filmed scenes as the Mother of Dragons for a scrapped Game of Thrones pilot episode. The thing is, Merchant didn’t feel that the project was right for her, leading to Daenerys’ eventual recasting of Clarke.
Buffy – Buffy The Vampire Slayer
There are many mediums for stories to be told, such as books, movies, and shows. It’s common in the entertainment industry for books to be adapted into movies or shows or shows into movies, or vice-versa. Although the option is there, there’s no denying that some stories just work better in one particular storytelling medium. Filmmaker/writer Joss Whedon thought so when he worked on Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Despite taking credit for writing the movie, starring Kristy Swanson as the titular character, he wasn’t all too happy with how the film turned out. A few years later, though, he landed the opportunity to tell the story he wanted, only this time it was a TV series. With Sarah Michelle Gellar recast as the lead character, the widely-acclaimed Buffy the Vampire Slayer show followed a much darker route than the film’s campier tone and ran for seven seasons.
Russell Hammond – Almost Famous
At this point, we’re all probably familiar with the notion that a piece of an artist is often quite apparent in the works they have made. After all, amazing things can be achieved if you put your heart into them. Such was the case for the comedy-drama flick Almost Famous, directed and written by Cameron Crowe. The movie is reportedly loosely based on his earlier stints as a writer for Rolling Stone during his teenage years.
While preparing for the film, Crowe wanted Brad Pitt to play the part of Russell Hammond. Although the duo spent four months developing the character, the actor ultimately dropped the role since he thought it wasn’t the right fit. It was a tough decision, but that didn’t stop the movie from being made. Not long after, Billy Crudup continued what Pitt started and garnered a skyrocketing degree of praise for his performance as the Stillwater band’s lead guitarist.
Danny Tanner – Full House
Besides the dramas, action flicks, and horror movies we watch from time to time, it’s safe to say we all also have times when we just want to laugh. Well, that’s where sitcoms come in. Through the years, plenty of investment money has been spent producing all kinds of comedy shows. One such title that has become a timeless icon in pop culture would undoubtedly be Full House.
The series follows the life of the Tanner family, with the Danny Tanner being the patriarch. Bob Saget was the show’s producer’s first choice for the part, but he was initially still busy working on The Morning Program, resulting in John Posey landing the role for the pilot episode. The thing was, not long after the pilot wrapped filming, The Morning Program ended, so the show’s executives requested to reshoot the entire pilot, with Saget this time instead of Posey.
Sarah Connor – Terminator Franchise
When a movie or series becomes successful and popular, it’s only a matter of time before they get the green light to make investments in expanding it into a franchise. This could mean giving the film a sequel continuing the story it established, a prequel revolving around how things came to be, or even a spin-off focusing on a different character.
The Terminator franchise has several memorable characters besides the titular character, one of whom is Sarah Connor, who was portrayed by the ever-iconic Linda Hamilton in the first two movies. For the TV series, The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Lena Headey helmed the titular role. For the soft-reboot instalment, Terminator Genisys, Emilia Clarke played a younger version of the character. If you’re a fan of the classics, though, then it’s safe to say you were plenty happy when Hamilton reprised the part for Terminator: Dark Fate.
Bosley – Charlie’s Angels Films
A few pages back, we talked about how the Buffy the Vampire Slayer movie had a new breath of life thanks to its subsequent TV series. Well, for this page, it will be the other way around. Releasing its first episode back in 1976, Charlie’s Angels takes credit for being one of the most popular shows of its time. Thanks to that popularity, the series had the chance to make its way onto the big screen with 2000’s Charlie’s Angels and 2003’s Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle, with a different cast portraying the titular trio.
Of course, the team would undoubtedly be incomplete without Bosley. Bill Murray took the role for the first film and garnered plenty of praise for his iconic sense of humour. However, due to supposed friction with the team behind the scenes, Murray declined to return for the 2003 sequel and was recast with Bernie Mac. Instead of replacing Murray’s Bosley entirely, though, Mac plays his adoptive brother, which also makes him a Bosley.
Rachel Dawes – The Dark Knight Trilogy
Reasons behind actors not reprising their roles for subsequent instalments can vary from one project to another. While the most common cause is creative differences and some heated moments on set, that doesn’t mean that’s always the case. Take Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Trilogy, for example.
For its debut film, Batman Begins, Katie Holmes portrayed Bruce Wayne/Batman’s childhood friend and love interest, Rachel Dawes. By the time its sequel, The Dark Knight, was released, fans were surely surprised by the sudden recast: Maggie Gyllenhaal played Rachel this time. As it turns out, the reason behind this move was that Holmes felt it was right for her to take on other acting credits, perhaps resulting in conflicting schedules. Fortunately, there was no ill will to be had by everyone involved in the film. In fact, Holmes has shown interest in working with the Dark Knight filmmaker in future projects.
The Hulk/Bruce Banner – Marvel Cinematic Universe
Comic book movies have been a thing for years already. However, in more recent years, its popularity rose to even greater degrees thanks to the massively successful Marvel Cinematic Universe. Debuting back in 2008 with the hit film Iron Man, the MCU has since produced many movies and series taking place in the same universe, introducing more characters as they go. One such hero that got his start during the franchise’s earlier years is the Hulk.
Released the same year as Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk follows the story of Bruce Banner/Hulk, portrayed by Edward Norton. While fans praised his performance in the film, Norton didn’t return for subsequent MCU instalments and was replaced by Mark Ruffalo, who has since become near-synonymous with the character. Although Norton initially expressed his concern that working on a mainstream franchise might keep him from dabbling in other projects, the actor has also shown interest in returning to the MCU in the future.
Evelyn O’Connell – The Mummy Films
In the entertainment industry, it’s no secret that there’s as much story to be told behind the scenes as there is in front of the camera. With that in mind, it is no surprise that there have been times when events are told with varying degrees of accuracy, depending on who the account was told by. Such was the case behind Rachel Weisz not returning to reprise her role as Evelyn O’Connell in The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor.
Along with Brendan Fraser garnering further recognition for his performance as the lead character Rick, Weisz’s work as Evie gave her a spot as one of Hollywood’s A-list actors. That was reason enough for fans to wonder why Evie was recast with Maria Bello. While there have been many speculations behind this decision, including a dislike for the script, Weisz had just finished working on a previous film by that point, so working on another right after was too inconvenient for her.
Clarice Starling – Hannibal Lecter Films
Now, if we’re going to name some of the best movies in the industry, it’s safe to say a couple of these entries will hail from the horror-thriller genre. One such title that undoubtedly deserves credit to be on that list would be the psychological horror film, The Silence of the Lambs, starring Jodie Foster as Clarice Starling and Anthony Hopkins as the ever-iconic Hannibal Lecter. With the film’s popularity and success, it was no surprise a sequel was soon announced, with the award-winning duo slated to reprise their respective roles.
Suffice it to say, the fans were excited. However, it was later revealed that Foster dropped from the project, and Clarice was recast with Julianne Moore. One reason behind her departure claims that she didn’t like what the sequel, entitled Hannibal, had in store for her character. According to the actress herself, though, she said that she was already occupied with another film by that point – her still-ongoing passion project Flora Plum.
Marty McFly – Back To The Future
Now, if we’re talking about sci-fi flicks that have received an incredible degree of love, one trilogy that many people would mention is the Back to the Future movies. With Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd starring as the lead characters Marty McFly and Emmett “Doc” Brown, respectively, Back to the Future continues to receive love from fans and newcomers today.
Now, although Fox was the first choice director Robert Zemeckis had for Marty, Fox’s work on the TV series Family Ties initially kept him from landing the part, resulting in Eric Stoltz taking on the role. For a few weeks, that is. While Stoltz may have been a skilled actor, he couldn’t pull off Marty’s sense of humour and comedic timing. By that point, Fox had more time on his hands, though still working on Family Ties, and ultimately replaced Stoltz and helped make what is now one of the most iconic films of all time.
Shrek – Shrek
Sometimes, when the director and scriptwriter work on a movie or show’s characters, they have a particular actor in mind to portray the part and write the script based on said actor’s skills. This habit of planning ahead is surely a good investment in the filmmaking business, but sometimes, things sadly don’t go as planned. Today, almost everyone has heard of animated Shrek films.
During the first film’s production process, Chris Farley initially voiced the titular ogre and finished around 90% of his part before his untimely passing. As a result, they got Mike Myers to voice Shrek, rewrote the script, and redid millions of dollars worth of animated footage. Still, their hard work paid off, with Myers’ performance helping make the character become a part of modern pop culture. For anyone curious, though, snippets of Farley’s work have found their way online.
James Bond – James Bond Films
The entertainment industry has plenty of franchises. While there are new ones slowly garnering recognition, there’s no denying that some of the most iconic ones still going today had their debut outings decades ago. One such example would be the James Bond franchise, focusing on the titular 007 agents. Debuting back in 1962 with the film Dr No, starring Sean Connery as the first James Bond, the franchise is still pretty popular today and doesn’t seem to be running out of gas anytime soon.
Since Connery, fans of the charismatic agent have since seen him save the world and defeat his adversaries in twenty-seven films. Along the way, the spy has been recast a couple of times, with actors such as Roger Moore, George Lazenby, Timothy Dalton, Pierce Brosnan, and most recently, Daniel Craig giving their own take on the character. Craig just finished his tenure with 2021’s No Time to Die. Wondering who’s next?
Spider-Man/Peter Parker – Spider-Man Films
Before the MCU even started, more than a few Marvel superheroes had their chance on the big screen. Of course, one of these characters is none other than the web-swinging friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man himself. His first outing in the cinemas came in 2002 with Spider-Man, directed by Sam Raimi and starring Tobey Maguire as the titular hero. The movie became a massive hit and took credit for helping redefine the superhero genre.
It spawned two sequels, with Maguire reprising his role as Peter Parker/Spider-Man. After that, it took a while before Andrew Garfield gave his own take as the wall-crawler in 2012’s The Amazing Spider-Man and its 2014 sequel. The MCU also has its own version of the character, with Tom Holland taking on the role. Thanks to Holland’s third solo outing, Spider-Man: No Way Home, fans had the chance to see all three Spider-Men share the screen, which was surely a dream come true for every Spider-Man fan.
Meg Griffin – Family Guy
Any television junkie fan can easily argue that Family Guy is one of the most recognizable television shows today. It certainly has been able to become one of the most famous cartoons in history, and creator Seth MacFarlane deserves all the credit for that. While he does multiple voices for several characters on the show, the show also featured a few ladies in the voiceover booths. One of the well-known characters on the show is Meg Griffin.
Meg was originally voiced by Lacey Chabert in Family Guy’s first season. In case you’re wondering, Chabert also starred in the film Mean Girls. Though she was relatively fit for the job, Chabert was eventually replaced by Mila Kunis in the succeeding seasons. She was certainly more than happy to fill in for Chabert who couldn’t seem to fit Family Guy into her busy schedule.
Jack Ryan – Jack Ryan Franchise
Anyone could make the case that the Jack Ryan franchise is one of the most memorable television shows of all time. It was certainly a hit, and it was a no-brainer for producers to come up with a breathtaking film. Despite the franchise’s success, there have been many actors who played iconic roles. Some of the most notable names that played Jack Ryan were John Krasinski and Alec Baldwin.
Before Krasinski played the iconic role in the now-famous television show, it was Baldwin who starred in the 1990 film entitled The Hunt for Red October. He received a ton of credit for his performance in the film, and it led to two more sequels in the Jack Ryan pipeline. Many assumed that Baldwin would continue to play the role, but that certainly wasn’t the case. Instead, he was then replaced by Harrison Ford, who’s also a Hollywood icon.
Samantha – Her
If you go back and take your mind back to the year 2013, then there’s a good chance that you remember a hit sci-fi film entitled Her. Interestingly, the film received credit as one of the best movies of that year, enabling American actor Spike Jonze to put his acting talent on full display. In the movie’s final moments, fans recognized the voice behind the A.I. operating system, and it was none other than Hollywood A-lister Scarlett Johansson.
Though Scarlett did an exceptional job in the film, it wasn’t her who was originally cast for this role. To begin, Jonze originally chose English actress Samantha Morton to play the role of Samantha in this movie. Morton spent a ton of hours in the booth in order to deliver her lines in an exceptional manner. She even finished all of her work when Jonze decided that he wanted to go in an entirely different direction.
Kevin – Home Alone 4
Anyone could argue that the iconic Home Alone franchise is synonymous with actor Macaulay Culkin. Without question, the actor easily takes the credit as Hollywood’s most recognizable child star due to his performance in the Home Alone films. As a result, he was able to turn the entire Home Alone franchise into a solidified Christmas classic.
Home Alone 1 and 2 are two films that are going to be a staple when it comes to go-to Christmas flicks. However, the succeeding Home Alone films weren’t much of a hit, and you could say that the Christmas miracle wore off after the second film. By the third Home Alone film, producers decided that it was time to shine the spotlight on a completely different character and his family. It certainly doesn’t surprise us that no one remembers the actors or the plot of the succeeding Home Alone films.
Frank Costanza – Seinfeld
It’s an unarguable fact that Seinfeld is one of the most, if not the most, recognizable television sitcoms of all time. The show deserves all the recognition for paving the way for all of the modern television shows we know and love today. It’s certainly not a surprise that this sitcom was able to achieve legendary status. The majority of the success goes to Jerry Seinfeld, but interestingly, there’s another Jerry who deserves credit.
That Jerry is Jerry Stiller, and he’ll forever be remembered for his iconic role as “Frank Costanza.” Interestingly, Stiller wasn’t the original choice for this role, and a different actor played “Frank” in the first episode of Seinfeld. The actor who played Frank in the first episode was John Randolph. Producers were quick to realize that he wasn’t the man for the job, and immediately reshot the scene with Stiller as Frank.
Dumbledore – The Harry Potter Series
The Harry Potter franchise is unquestionably one of the most valuable franchises we know today. Everyone certainly recognizes the franchise’s main characters, Harry, Ron, and Hermione, but the franchise wouldn’t be the same without Albus Dumbledore. He is the headmaster of the Hogwarts School of Wizardry and Witchcraft, and he’s known to help students forge their own path when it comes to handling magic.
Besides teaching students, Dumbledore also takes credit for helping Harry overcome all the adversity that surrounded them. Interestingly, this character was originally played by actor Richard Harris, and he was Dumbledore in the franchise’s first two films. Unfortunately, Harris passed away after filming, and he was immediately replaced by Michael Gambon in the succeeding films. Despite the differences, any Harry Potter fan could easily argue that Gambon did a relatively good job in portraying the role of Dumbledore.
Jenna Maroney – 30 Rock
30 Rock is unquestionably one of the most popular television shows of all time. This iconic comedy show was able to garner acclaim and recognition due to the cast which included Alec Baldwin, Tina Fey, Tracy Morgan, and many more. Among the most memorable characters in the show was Jenna Maroney, who was played by American actress Jane Krakowski. Without a doubt, Krakowski was able to add her own flair to the character, and she deserves credit for bringing the character’s humour to life.
Despite the success of this character, it’s interesting to learn that this wasn’t always the case. In the show’s unaired pilot episode, it was actress Rachel Dratch took on the task of playing the role of the character. It certainly seemed that she was able to nail the part, however, Dratch didn’t have what the show’s producers were looking for. As a result, they chose to cast Krakowski for the role instead.
Laurie Forman – That 70’s Show
When it comes to memorable comedy sitcoms, That 70’s Show is one comedy sitcom that’s on top of the list. This show was able to bring some of the biggest names in Hollywood today into the limelight, and we’ll certainly be forever grateful for that. Some of the most recognizable names who got their start in this show include Ashton Kutcher, Mila Kunis, and Wilmer Valderrama.
One character in this comedy sitcom that’s often underrated is the character of Laurie Forman. She was Eric’s sister, and actress Lisa Robin Kelly portrayed the role from 1998 until 2003. Without question, the actress deserves credit for a memorable performance, but she eventually lost the role due to personal reasons. Due to her decision to leave the show, the producers had to replace her with actress Christina Moore who portrayed the role until the show’s eighth and final season.
Darrin Stephens – Bewitched
Even if you weren’t born during the ‘60s and ‘70s, there’s a good chance that you’re familiar with the iconic magical television sitcom Bewitched. It is one show that multiple generations enjoyed, and its storyline was able to entice millions of people around the world. Another brilliant part of this show was the fantastic casting decisions. You could even say that those casting decisions allowed this show to achieve massive success.
One of the most memorable characters on the show was Darrin Stephens, who was played by actor Dick York. Anyone who appreciates good acting needs to give credit to York for a masterful performance of the role, and everyone certainly loved him. Unfortunately, York started to suffer from terrible back pain during the show’s filming. As a result, the producers of this show had to replace him with Dick Sargent.
Gordon – Sesame Street
Sesame Street is one of those television shows that’ll surely have a special place in our hearts. Interestingly, this iconic children’s television show is still going strong to this day. With this in mind, kids of this current generation will get to see some of our favourite characters on television. Some of the show’s most memorable characters include Big Bird, Elmo, Cookie Monster, Bert and Ernie, and Gordon.
All of the characters from Sesame Street have been voiced by the same voice actors, but the voice of Gordon has belonged exclusively to actor Roscoe Orman for several decades. Despite his long tenure as Gordon, he wasn’t the first actor to have voiced this legendary character. From 1969 until 1972, it was actor Matt Robinson played the role. After him, Hal Miller took credit for stepping in from 1972 until 1974.
Lily Tucker-Pritchett – Modern Family
One of the primary reasons why characters from television shows get recast is because their schedule isn’t always on their side. This fact is especially true for child actors as they grow up pretty quickly, quicker than producers would like them to be. With this in mind, the growth of child actors can work to a show’s disadvantage. It’s certainly the case with the child actors who played the role of Lily Tucker-Pritchett in Modern Family.
Multiple child actors got the acting credit for playing the role of Lily in Modern Family. Lily’s baby self was played by twins named Ella and Jaden Hiller. Then, the next season came, and the producers wanted to show the audience that Lily had grown up. They certainly considered keeping the twins on, but their parents opted to pull them out of the spotlight. As a result, the twins were replaced by a child actor named Aubrey Anderson-Emmons.
Aunt Viv – The Fresh Prince Of Bel Air
If you grew up in the ‘90s, then there’s certainly a good chance that you watched The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air during your childhood. It’s safe to assume that there’s nothing quite more memorable than the show’s theme song. Besides Will Smith and the show’s theme, one could argue that Aunt Viv is one of the show’s most recognizable characters. Interestingly, multiple actresses played the role during the show’s six seasons.
American actress Janet Hubert received acting credit for playing the original Aunt Vivian. However, rumour has it that Smith didn’t like Hubert, and he eventually got her fired from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air as a result. In the end, actress Daphne Reid filled in for Hubert and managed to do a decent job. The change didn’t seem to bother fans, and it certainly didn’t stop the show from becoming one of the most celebrated television shows of all time.
Sookie St. James – Gilmore Girls
Melissa McCarthy is unquestionably one of the most recognizable actresses in the entertainment industry today. All though she has received credit as one of the most incredible actresses in history, only a few know that she first broke through the spotlight in Gilmore Girls. In the iconic American television series, McCarthy played the role of Sookie St. James, and she quickly became a firm favourite among the show’s audience.
McCarthy appeared in the show’s first season. However, there’s only a select group of individuals that seem to know that she wasn’t the original actress cast to play the role. It was Alex Borstein who was supposed to be the original Sookie, and Borstein is clearly seen in the show’s unaired pilot. Borstein had issues squeezing Gilmore Girls into her schedule, and it eventually led to McCarthy securing the role.
Catelyn Stark – Game Of Thrones
Game of Thrones is arguably one of the most revered and decorated television dramas of all time. Though the show may have come to an end, it’s not a surprise that fans of the show will continue to talk about it on a regular basis. As if this fact wasn’t enough, the show’s cast have all made their way into stardom, and some even became legends in their own right. One of those actresses who became a star is Michelle Fairly, who played the role of Catelyn Stark.
It certainly seems like Fairly was the perfect choice to portray the role of Catelyn Stark. However, it’s interesting to learn that she wasn’t the first choice for the role. In the unaired pilot, it was actress Jennifer Ehle got the credit for playing the original Catelyn Stark. However, the show underwent several changes between the unaired pilot and the first episode, and one of those changes included Ehle as Catelyn Stark.
Fandral – Marvel Cinematic Universe
If you love Thor in the latest series of Marvel movies, then you know that there’s a group of characters that are willing to fight for him in any battle. Thor certainly has an army of loyal followers and friends, and one of those characters is Fandral. In the first film, Fandral was portrayed by actor Josh Dallas, and it certainly looked like he was the perfect actor for the role. Unfortunately, he didn’t return to play the role in the succeeding movies.
Dallas may have been perfect as Fandral, but unfortunately, he was unable to squeeze it into his busy schedule. Interestingly, he chose to take on the lead role for another movie entitled Once Upon A Time. As a result, Dallas was replaced by fellow actor Zachary Levi. To Levi’s credit, he was able to add his own personal flair to the character, making it more appealing to fans.
Marnie Piper – Halloweentown Film Series
Disney fans would be familiar with the Halloweentown movie series, the first instalment of which was released back in 1998. That first in the series proved to be a commercial success and so the cast and crew were given due credit for the hard work, and because of this initial warm welcome, Disney lined up four more movies under the same series. Kimberly Brown was slated to take the role of Marnie Piper in all of the movie instalments, but that did not happen.
Some changes occurred towards the fourth film and the directors wanted to go in another direction with her character. They eventually replaced Brown with Sara Paxton. Another version of why Brown did not go back for the fourth movie was that there was a supposed scheduling conflict with Big Bad Wolf, a horror film she was a part of at that time. Whatever reason is there, fans of the first three movies surely missed her non-appearance in the final film.
Sarah Braverman – Parenthood
There are various reasons why a role would be recast and being sick is one of them. This was the case with the role of Sarah Braverman, who was originally played by Maura Tierney. You are probably going to be surprised as you have always associated this Parenthood role with Lauren Graham. Well, this is because Tierney only appeared during the first episode and had to give up due to her ongoing battles then.
Her treatment schedules were in absolute conflict with the demanding shooting timeline. For about a year, the actress underwent treatment and she eventually finished the needed rounds of medications, and care from her doctors and health insurance providers. She took it easy and only appeared in a stage play back in 2010. In the following years, she had various TV and movie projects. Fans would always wonder how the character would develop if Tierney continued to take it.
The Fat Lady – Harry Potter
The world of Harry Potter is certainly full of magic. With the recent release of the latest instalment in the Fantastic Beasts series, there is now great chatter about the original series once more. There were many magical elements present in the movie, several of which have to be done through CGI, so has no problem being recast. There were those, however, that needed actual actors or actresses, such as the Fat Lady.
Fans would remember that this walking painting was particularly important as she stands guard at the door of the Gryffindor Common Room. Without the password, no one could gain entry. During the first movie, Elizabeth Spriggs played the role of this painting, but when the character became more important, during Prisoner of Azkaban, Dawn French took over. Others liked the first actress, but they also liked the greater degree of second actress’ vibrant personality.
Kristen Parker – A Nightmare On Elm Street
Slasher movies usually change characters now and then and so it is not surprising for different actors or actresses to play the same roles, and A Nightmare on Elm Street is no exception to that. There is just something different about the character named Kristen Parker. She was quite reserved and helpless at first, but over the course of the franchise, she developed and was able to defend herself.
For the first three movies, we give credit to Patricia Arquette who was able to take the journey of honing this particular character. The twist, though, is that she was no longer in the fourth movie. Tuesday Knight had to step in because Arquette was very much pregnant during that time. Well, she did give birth to a healthy child, so taking a step back was all worth it. Knight did justice to the role as well, so we are sure that Arquette was very happy.
Kaitlin Cooper – The O.C.
People do like following the lives of others, and that is why back in the early 2000s, The O.C. was a complete hit. We have to give credit to all the actors and actresses who played their respective roles well. This particular teen drama followed the story of affluent kids who hailed from Orange Country. Every aspect of their lives, from their school to personal relationships was tackled.
Though she only was a minor character, Kaitlin Cooper during the first three seasons, she became part of the main roles during the fourth. During the first season, she was portrayed by Shailene Woodley. The character was then recast and during Seasons three and four, we saw Willa Holland take the role. Woodley was a very talented actress and as such, she was nominated for Best Performance on TV on occasion. She was then cast as the lead role in The Secret Life of the American Teenager.
Robin Hood – Once Upon A Time
There are many movies that brought our fairy tales to the screen, among them Maleficent, Once Upon a Time, and Cinderella. These screen adaptations became famous because they brought familiar names that we have only read about to something visual. One of the well-loved characters is Robin Hood, a true enemy of a rich man’s home security system, as he would rob them and then distribute the loot to the poor.
In Once Upon a Time, this role was played by Tom Ellis. However, he got the Lucifer project and with several seasons being eventually filmed, he was not able to take on the role of Robin Hood anymore and he had to focus on being a devil detective. While the character in Once Upon a Time was relatively minor, it got considerable audience interest when Lucifer’s viewership skyrocketed. We can say that there were some benefits to Ellis being cast as the original Robin Hood.
Catwoman – Batman
Now this one is no surprise to everyone. We are aware that many superhero movies are rebooted and remade, and so, there are several actors who would portray one character. Take the example of Spiderman, where there are four famous celebrities who were cast for the role. We do have to give credit to the casting crew for making sure that the new actors are brought up to speed and trained well.
The character of Catwoman has taken on many iterations over the years since it was taken by Julie Newmar back in 1966. Many viewers liked her performance and they expected her to take the role for years to come. This did not happen, as Lee Meriweather became the new face shortly after. Making things more complicated and harder to remember, Eartha Kitt became Catwoman towards the end of the TV show. This is, of course, not counting the other actresses in various other movies and remakes.
Dash – The Incredibles 2
Some might wonder how a voice actor could be recast when they are not seen on the screen, right? Well, here is the thing, one reason why an actor could be replaced is when he no longer looks like the character he is supposed to represent. The same is true when he no longer sounds like that particular character, too. In this case, Dash’s voice actor, Spencer Fox, grew so fast that his voice was no longer that of a child’s. Hello, puberty, right?
What the production team did was make investments in hiring another child actor, Huck Milner, to replace the first. He is a budding young actor and he currently lives in New York. We are probably going to see more of him in the coming years. Meanwhile, Fox has found another use for his talents and is now the lead guitarist for the indie rock back Charly Bliss, which co-founded this back in 2011.
Daario Naharis – Game Of Thrones
In many instances, there are changes to the characters because the production team wants to be more realistic in terms of how the character is portrayed. On a number of occasions, there have been replacements on the cast of Game of Thrones as they wanted to make things better. Some of the cast member changes are subtle, but there are those that are a bit more obvious. Such was the case with the character Daario Naharis, which was originally played by Ed Skrein.
It was suggested that he left the TV show because of politics. It was his intention to stay for a long time, but disagreements became quite common. Eventually, Michiel Huisman, who has no degree of resemblance with Skrein, eventually replaced him. The Dutch actor has worked on various projects, including The Age of Adaline, Floris and Full Moon Party. He first got a break on Dutch TV.
Victoria – Twilight Saga
Teens have gone gaga over Twilight when it came out. It even has a cult following to this day. People were either Team Jacob or Team Edward, but we all know that Bella ended up with Edward. While there have been many vampire stories in the past, this was one of the ones that really made the sub-genre popular among the youth of this generation. Any vampire story would not be complete without a villain, and we can say that Victoria is one such evil character.
The redhead was originally played by actress Rachelle Lefevre in the first two movies. She had hoped to make more investments and continue acting for the rest of the series, but the Twilight shooting schedule conflicted with another project she was working on. In the end, Bryce Dallas Howard got the recast role. Interestingly, she was originally cast for the role but turned it down as it was a minor character. We know that the character was needed to spice up the plot.
George McFly – Back To The Future Film Series
One reason why actors or actresses leave a franchise is when they have disagreements with the production team. Perhaps they did not like how a character is being portrayed or there is a great degree of disagreement over the scripts. The latter was the case with Crispin Glover, who took the role of George McFly in the Back to the Future movie franchise. According to sources, he did not like the script and how the character would eventually be portrayed.
Eventually, Jeffrey Weissman was tapped to become the new McFly. Fans did not notice initially because the make-up team did a good job of making Weissman look like Glover. They also used footage of the former actor in the sequel. Selecting him was indeed a good decision for the casting team as he was a veteran actor who has appeared in a number of movies and TV shows. He is also a teacher and is known for training young actors and actresses in the art of acting.
Willow Rosenberg – Buffy The Vampire Slayer
Fans of Buffy the Vampire Slayer will know that the television series would not have been the same without Buffy’s best friend, Willow, which was brought to life by Alyson Hannigan in several seasons. However, the latter actress wasn’t really the original cast chosen for the role. In an unaired pilot episode of the series, the character of Willow was portrayed by Riff Regan, but the producers deemed her too confident and decided to recast her.
The supernatural drama series is based on the eponymous film back in 1992, which follows the story of Buffy Summers, who is the latest in a line of young women known as vampire slayers or simply slayers. They are chosen by fate to battle vampires and other forces of darkness. The protagonist wants to live a normal life, but as the series progresses, she learns to embrace her destiny, aided by a watcher who guides, teaches, and trains her.
Christine Cagney – Cagney & Lacey
One of the most successful franchises in television is Cagney & Lacey, an American procedural drama series that was aired on CBS network back in the ‘80s. The story is about two New York City police detectives, who lead different lives, Christine Cagney and Mary Beth Lacey, a career-minded single woman and a married working mother. For the television movie pilot series, Loretta Swit played the role of Cagney. However, her contract obligations prevented her from continuing with the role.
Meg Foster subsequently took on the role of Cagney for the short six episodes in the first season before she was replaced by another actress, Sharon Gless. The character of Cagney was originally conceived with the latter actress in mind, but she was unavailable for the pilot episodes or the first seven instalments of the TV movie of the first season. Nonetheless, she continued with the role and earned two nominations for an Emmy Award.
James Rhodes/War Machine – Marvel Cinematic Universe
Iron Man made its debut back in 2008, and it rocked viewers worldwide. It was the first instalment within the new Marvel Cinematic Universe, which also marked the beginning of an impressive career for Robert Downey Jr. in the franchise. For the role of Colonel James Rhodes/War Machine, Terrence Howard was contracted to play alongside Downey Jr. He was signed on before any of the other major actors and was the highest-paid actor in the film at the time.
In Iron Man 2, Don Cheadle assumed the role of Howard in 2010. However, prior to that, it was reported that the latter actor was offered a 50 to 80 percent pay cut for the film sequel, but it was unclear whether he turned down the proposal or the MCU withdrew their offer. It could have been a huge investment of money. Cheadle reprised this role in Iron Man 3, Avengers: Age of Ultron, and several other sequels.
John-Boy Walton – The Waltons
In the ‘70s, the historical drama television series The Waltons made its mark, and the cast was able to win over millions of fans around the world. However, at some point in the series, a rare and dramatic recasting of the main character happened for John-Boy Walton. Richard Thomas became internationally famous for taking on the role for the first seven seasons. Following his departure from the series, his role was assumed by Robert Wightman.
The Waltons is a story about a family in rural Virginia at the time of World War II and the Great Depression. It was based on the same characters of the television movie The Homecoming: A Christmas Story, which became a success back in the ‘70s, and the CBS network ordered one season of episodes of it—good movie investments for the network. After the show’s end sequence, where the family said goodnight to one another before drifting off to sleep, the catchphrase “Goodnight, John-Boy” was one of the most common ones in that decade.
Reggie Mantle – Riverdale
Riverdale is a television teen drama series based on the Archie Comics characters, which made its debut back in January 2017 with positive reviews. It follows the story of teenagers trying to unravel the evils lurking within the seemingly innocent town after a teenager was slain. In its first season, the character of Reggie Mantle was portrayed by Ross Butler. At the time, the actor was offered the role of Zach Dempsey in the Netflix drama 13 Reasons Why, which eventually led to his departure due to schedule conflicts.
Butler was then replaced by Charles Melton for the role in Riverdale in 2017, which earned him mainstream attention during the second season of the series. Following his recurring role, Melton officially became a series regular starting with the third season. As his career began to take off, he starred in his first feature film, The Sun Is Also a Star, as Daniel Bae. His credit score would surely rise.
Lavender Brown – Harry Potter Film Series
Lavender Brown is not a major character during the early years of Harry at Hogwarts, but there’s no doubt that she stole the show in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. It was at this time that she entered into a turbulent relationship with Ron. However, eagle-eyed Potter fans were quick to notice that the actress playing the role of Lavender is not the one they’re used to seeing. A number of actresses took on this role over the years, which included Kathleen Cauley and Jennifer Smith.
Fans were in for a surprise when Jessie Cave assumed the role in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. She’s an English actress known for her shows in London and a published cartoon-doodle book titled Love Sick, with some of the designs appearing on greeting cards. Cave was in the comedic play Sunrise back in 2019, which was based on her life and relationships. Her first novel was published in 2021, Sunset.
The Oracle – The Matrix Trilogy
One of the most epic sci-fi series of all time is The Matrix trilogy, which will forever be etched in the history of films, and it’s not hard to realize why. Even today, there are still a lot of people discussing whether they would take the red pill or the blue pill. That’s how much the movie has messed up their perceptions of reality.
Kidding aside, The Matrix features a cyberpunk story of humanity’s technological downfall, in which the creation of artificial intelligence dawned the way of self-aware machines that imprisoned mankind in the virtual reality called the Matrix. As the protagonist Neo tries to gain wisdom and insight into his future, he often makes his way to see The Oracle, which was originally portrayed by Gloria Foster in the first two movies, but sadly, she passed away and was replaced by Mary Alice in The Matrix Revolutions.
Mandy – Last Man Standing
A number of characters are recast when a show changes management, which is exactly what happened to the ABC sitcom Last Man Standing. Following the latter network’s cancellation of the show, fans were happy to know that Fox took over. However, they’re also quick to notice that there were a few changes that didn’t make sense to them, perhaps notably the casting for Mandy. The character had been played by Molly Ephraim for six years, but things inevitably didn’t stay that way.
With a new studio and investments behind, Fox decided to replace her with Molly McCook, starring as the major character of Mandy, a role she inherited from Ephraim following the network switch and the show’s hiatus back in 2017 and 2018. Last Man Standing follows the character of Mike Baxter, a senior executive of an outdoor sporting goods store chain in Denver, Colorado, who has a wife and three daughters, hence the title “last man.”
Ann – Arrested Development
Sitcoms come complete with their cast of characters, and writers often include the not-so-important ones to fade into the background without making any fuss, and with the television series Arrested Development, it was supposed to be the case for the character of Ann, but the opposite happened instead. She ended up making more of a mark to some degree than expected. A lot of people remember the later seasons where Mae Whitman took on the role of Ann, but the more forgettable version was portrayed by Alessandra Torressani.
She was replaced after appearing in one episode. The series follows the story of family man Michael Bluth as he does his best to keep his family and business from collapsing following his father’s incarceration for embezzling money. Michael helps the family adjust from riches to rags, supporting his mother Lucille to keep up appearances as well as other members of their family, adapting to working life.