For better or worse, Hollywood is really into remakes right now. But instead of viewing this trend as annoying and cynical, what if we really leaned into it and used it as an opportunity to rebuild the classics from scratch, making them even more perfect? It is in that spirit that MarieClaire.com presents Recasted, which dares to wonder, “Who would we want to see in this iconic film today?” Think of it as Fantasy Football mixed with your annual Oscar Pool.
This time around, we're recasting classic films through the decades as part of our Rom-Com Week special.
Let me ask you something: What more in the world do you want than Audrey Hepburn, a twisty mystery, and Paris? Exactly, nothing. And 1963’s Charade has all of that and more. One of the original romantic comedies, it’s paved the way for all the other films we’ll see in this special Romantic Comedy Recasted series (running all week on MarieClaire.com!)
Since this movie stars two of the greatest stars of all-time—Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn—a fantasy recast cannot be taken lightly. We need people who are beautiful, talented, and down for a heist. Fortunately, this new cast checks all of those boxes and more. I believe in this recast so much that I’m dusting off a spot on my Ikea dresser to make room for a Golden Globe.
Before we get into the recasting, I thought you’d all like to know a fun anecdote about this film: The original script was inexplicably unsellable, so writers Peter Stone and Marc Behm turned it into a book and released it in pieces, in a magazine, under a new name (the now-title Charade). Guess who saw those pieces and fell in love with the story? The same movie companies who initially rejected it, of course! So let this be a lesson to you: If you try hard enough, your dreams will come true and Audrey Hepburn will be involved.
Regina "Reggie" Lampert
Original: Audrey Hepburn
Recasted: Natalie Portman
There’s beauty, and then there’s Natalie Portman and Audrey Hepburn. There’s talent, and then there’s Natalie Portman and Audrey Hepburn. Not only do these two have immeasurable looks and skills in common, but they’ve also both used their status to advocate for change in the world. And if there’s anytime we need Natalie Portman on a press tour, it’s before the 2020 election. Even if you’re not a fan of the film Charade (1. How dare you?), just imagine Portman on the couch with Senator Kamala Harris talking about the election, Hollywood, and whatever else Stephen Colbert is thinking for them. If that is not enough to get this film remade with this cast, then there’s little hope for democracy.
Original: Cary Grant
Recast: Peter Gallagher
Grant was a bit older than Hepburn, because that’s Hollywood. Age-and-gender issues aside, Cary Grant is an incredible talent and also aged better than any boxed wine from Trader Joe’s I’ve ever had. Which is why Peter Gallagher, original Dad Crush for any viewer of The O.C., is primed for the part. He’s at his best in a suit and can convince anyone of anything at anytime, making him perfect for this role.
Original: Walter Matthau
Recasted: Billy Eichner
Billy Eichner is making his way to the mainstream, from his guest spot on Parks & Recreation to his role in Friends From College, that Netflix show random people tell you to watch but you never actually have. First known as the funny guy who shouts at you on the street, he’s come a long way from his digital series and has the powerful ability to take his comedy into some more dramatic realms—like, say, playing a C.I.A. administrator. Also, just look at him! He’s the very definition of Old Hollywood Glamour.
Original: James Coburn
Recasted: John Mulaney
Adding another immensely talented comedian to the mix, John Mulaney like Eichner (whom he guest starred opposite on Difficult People!) oozes timeless charm. Mulaney doesn’t have as many straight-up acting credits to his name as Billy does, but I feel that no one would be opposed to having John Mulaney playing a John Mulaney-esque Tex Panthollow. And no spoilers here, but let’s just say it helps that he looks a bit like someone else that was recasted for a semi-plot-twist down the line that may or may not be true. OOOOH!
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