Wed, 21 Mar, 2018Danielle McCarthy

Famous TV actors who auditioned for a different role

Famous TV actors who auditioned for a different role

By the time a television show arrives on our screens, actors have had time to settle into their role, and after just an episode or two, the world and characters feel lived in and real (in the best shows, sometimes it takes longer than that – if it ever happens). But the roles some of your favourite TV actors are famous for aren’t always the one they had their sights set on when they auditioned. Here are some actors who weren’t the right choice for one role but landed another one anyway.

1. Game of Thrones

The role: Jon Snow

The actor: Iwan Rheon

According to Rheon himself, he auditioned for the role of Jon Snow, even making it to the final two actors in the running for the part. Obviously, Kit Harrington won the part in the end, but producers kept Rheon in mind for the role of Ramsay Bolton, who made his appearance a couple of seasons later.

2. The Walking Dead

The role: Michonne

The actor: Sonequa Martin-Green

According to Martin-Green, she originally auditioned for the role of Michonne. But we think she was perfect as Sasha.

3. Buffy the Vampire Slayer

The roles: Buffy and Cordelia

The actors: Sarah Michelle Gellar and Charisma Carpenter

Just as there was only room for one Queen Bee at Sunnydale High, there could only be one actor in the role of Buffy. Famously, Sarah Michelle Gellar originally auditioned for the role of Cordelia Chase – the popular mean girl constantly taunting Buffy and her friends. Charisma Carpenter, meanwhile, read for the lead role. According to Carpenter, “I went in and read for Buffy and [executive producer Gail Berman and creator Joss Whedon] said, ‘Can you prepare Cordelia’s dialogue, go in the hallway and prepare those lines, and come back and read for Cordelia? We think you might be better suited for that.’ So I did.”

In a move Cordelia herself would dub “bizarro”, the two actors landed each other’s intended role, each becoming science fiction icons in their own right.

4. Supernatural

The role: Sam Winchester

The actor: Jensen Ackles

Iconic in his role of the charismatic Dean Winchester, Jensen Ackles surprised many fans when he revealed that he originally auditioned for the role of Dean’s brother, Sam. The producers liked Ackles, but preferred Jared Padalecki’s likeability for the role. They describe Sam as the Luke Skywalker of the duo and wanted Ackles to turn on his charm for the more Han Solo-like role of Dean.

Which of these role swaps surprised you the most?