Dream Casting, Sandman Casting Call Part 4: Crazy Cute.

September 21st, 2010 by

Now that I’ve got Dream and Death well cast, I’m going to try to tackle the most variable character in the series.  Delirium is the youngest of of the Endless.  Which is a bit like calling a 150 foot Sequoia, small because most get up to 160.  Nevertheless, she does have a childlike quality to her.  As the embodiment of insanity, she is unpredictable, sometimes sweet, playful, and careless.  Sometimes dangerously sensitive to slight, and quick to anger.  She is easily distracted, and nearly impossible to have a coherent conversation with.  All of which makes her the most compelling character in the series to me.  And many of her scenes are the ones I find most entertaining.

It also makes her very difficult to cast. Like her fellow Endless, her appearance changes frequently.  Unlike the others, hers changes rapidly, often mid-scene, sometimes mid-sentence.  She has few consistent physical characteristics.  She most often looks like an adolescent girl, though occasionally looks as young as nine, or as old as twenty.  Her clothing is usually in tatters.  Her hair, is often a wild variety of unnatural colors, although sometimes it is partially, or completely shaved.  Her most consistent feature is that she has one blue, and one green eye.  However, the most reliable way to identify her is by her technicolor word balloons, and nonsensical dialogue.

In my last entry, I site the fact that Summer Glau’s breakthrough role on Firefly, had too much in common with Del (as she is affectionately referred to), to make her my choice for Delirium.  It would feel a bit like a repeat performance.

So I hesitated a little with my top choice for the part, Hannah Murray, because she has also portrayed, a spacey, vulnerable, occasionally dangerous, character.  She played the mentally ill, anorexic, Cassie, on the British, out of control teens drama, Skins.  I’m giving her the part though, because fewer people who would be going to see Sandman, would have already seen Skins, than would have seen Firefly.

She demonstrated on Skins, that she possess all the necessary skills to play Delirium.  She made Cassie, a character that could have been played for laughs, or as a freak show, into someone you couldn’t take your eyes off.  She had me constantly yelling at the screen, for someone to please pay attention to her, as she desperately needed help.  Anytime someone hurt her feelings, I felt it, and demanded vengeance.  And when she was happy, it was magic.  She managed to make me entirely invested in her safety, even when she was the one endangering it.  And she scared the bejesus out of me, in her darker moments.

She looks young enough, and with good wigs, and makeup, she can pull off Del’s ever-changing looks.  The effects department will have to work out how to add the frogs, fish, and or butterflies, that tend to manifest out of thin air, around her.

My alternate choice, should the imaginary studio require a bigger name, is another Whedon alum.  Sarah Michelle Geller.

The second image, is a portrait of Delirium, that I found in a book called Vertigo Visions.  The strong likeness of the Del in this picture, to Sarah Michelle, is what put her in my mind for the role.  The books dates it as having been done in 1995, two years before Buffy made her a household name.  It could be a coincidence, or the artist Sherilyn van Valkenburgh, could have spotted the then unknown (and at that point brunette) actress in something, and used her as the model.

Either way, I think she could handle the part.  She displayed a lot of versatility over her seven years as Buffy.  Displaying strength, and spunk, along side vulnerability, and introspection.  She is in her thirties now, but she is on the tiny side, I’m sure with the right costumes and makeup, she could be made to look the appropriate age.

Okay, that’s it for the major parts.  The next entries will be two or more characters each.  Starting I think, with the twins.

Click to read parts 1, 2, and 3.

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One Response to “Dream Casting, Sandman Casting Call Part 4: Crazy Cute.”

  1. Florence Says:

    Oooh, looking forward to the twins post.

    I agree that Cassie could pull off Del, but they’d have to move quickly before age ages out, too.

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