Casting a Remake: My Cousin Vinny

Vinny Gambini: Chris Messina

After seeing him in The Mindy Project and The Newsroom, I can very clearly picture him as Vinny.

Mona Lisa Vito: Mila Kunis

The twinkly passionate rants that come so easily to Mona Lisa, would be well delivered by Mila.

Bill Gambini: Diego Boneta

Diego was also a murder suspect on Scream Queens where he was charming as hell.

Stan Rothenstein: DeRon Horton

DeRon is a sweet modern nerdy angel on Dear White People, and I feel like he would do well as the compatriot of Vinny’s cousin.

Judge Chamberlain Haller: Holly Hunter

Holly can do smart but kinda hick, and ultimately fair.

Jim Trotter III: Cary Elwes

Cary is quite able to play a creepy seemingly helpful southern gentleman.


Remake for Fun: The Thin Man (1934)

One of my favorite murder mysteries/Halloween movies is the Thin Man series. This is partly because of the writing, but mostly the chemistry between William Powell and Myra Loy. They are such a joy to watch as they sparkle dialog at each other while tripping over dead bodies/clues. That Nora is such an equal partner to Nick is a wonderful thing coming from the 1930s, and gives life to hope.

This is my Recast for Purely Fun Purposes:

Nick Charles: John Cho

Could you get any more dapper than John Cho?

Nora Charles: Karen Gillan

Karen is so good at messing with John Cho in Selfie, in that Nick and Nora fashion. Plus, she’s hilarious and ridiculously talented.

Dorothy Wynant:  Vanessa Hudgens

As the ingenue of the story, Vanessa fits this bill. She was so good in Powerless, and she does sweet better than anyone.

Guild: Dave Bautista

Okay, so they also look alike to the point it is weird, but that is not why I chose him. I love Drax, and his clueless works for the role of main cop trying to back up the Charles team.

Mimi: Amy Poehler

Mimi be crazy. She is a desperate 1930s woman amped to the edge of comedy, so naturally I thought of Poehler. She would have fun skipping on that edge:)

MacCaulay: Jon Hamm

Evil lawyer man? Bring the Hammer.

Tommy: Sam Riley

Steadfast fiance to Dorothy, Tommy is leading man bland.

Gilbert: Dylan Minnette

I am not familiar with many young young actors, but the youngest and creepiest I am aware of is Dylan.

Chris Jorgenson: Skeet Ulrich

Has everyone seen Riverdale yet? Cause that level of Noir be bangin’. Skeet rocks in it, and could so play Mimi’s kind-of husband.

Julia Wolf: Natasha Leggero

The classic secretary stole Mimi’s rich husband away character. She a tricky dame, and so is Natasha.

Wynant: John Slattery

Wynant is a brilliant scientist that is also kind of a scary dick to people. He redeems himself by how much he cares for his daughter, though. This is the plumest of the non-Nick and Nora roles, and Slattery so deserves it.


Casting a Remake: The Miracle of Morgan’s Creek

This movie storyline would definitely not work in modern times. Maybe. Kinda. We still seem to be a bit behind when it comes to unplanned pregnancies as a culture. The idea of recasting this classic, and finding current actors to play in this Preston Sturges made world is at first impossible. That is, until you realize how many dorkfish are still out there, that can still do a pratfall and nail 1930s fast-talk humor. Bless you, you amazing weirdos.

Norval Jones: John Gallagher Jr

John is a master of all comic acting, and he can sing like an angel. The role of a sweet and nervous late bloomer would be easy for him to get into.

Trudy Kockenlocker: Krysten Ritter

Trudy talks like a bullet train without breathing, and is sweet as she is weird.

Emmy Kockenlocker: Kiernan Shipka

Emmy is my favorite part. She is the little sister, but is the wisest of the bunch. And damn, can she deliver a put down. After watching her grow up in Mad Men, and seeing her in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Kiernan’s got this.

Constable Edmund Kockenlocker: John Pyper-Ferguson

The father of the girls has been raising them on his own for an undetermined period of time. He’s a former soldier, current constable. He is gruff, ornery, and washes the dishes in a frilly apron. Most of all, he loves and protects his daughters.

Mr. Rafferty : Bill Irwin

Rafferty has some great lines, and is a loyal sweetie. After watching Legion, I had to add in Irwin, he belongs.

Mr. Tuerck: Jason Segel

Is Norval’s boss an asshole? Yes.

Mr. Johnson: Jemaine Clement

The lawyer that rents a room to Norval is sharp as a tack and wry as hell.

“Psychology” Military Police Sergeant:  Jaime Camil

This precious darling of an actor is perfect for disciplining soldiers with kindness and “psychology”.

Justice of the Peace: David Cross

Could he be considered the evil villain of this tale? Yes. Mind your business, Mr. Nosy.

Governor McGinty : Melissa McCarthy

Brian Donlevy is one of the more underrated comic actors, mostly stereotyped into gangster roles because of his tough exterior. And he has mad dimples. Melissa is perfect for modern McGinty.

The Boss: Leslie Jones

The McGinty puppet master turned co-pilot, Leslie is perfect for The Boss.


Casting a Remake: Taming of the Shrew

This time I can not resist one of the most classic of the classics to dreamcast. The dream director would be Joss Whedon since his version of Much Ado About Nothing was so fabulous.

Katherine Minola- Ruth Negga


Ruth is the most luminous talent that I have seen in a while. My love of her take on Tulip in AMC’s Preacher is well documented, and I look forward to her movie Loving as well as anything else she appears in.

Petruchio-  Jason Statham


Jason is the perfect match for Ruth. He has a brilliance with comedy and a very Petruchio earthiness. It would be an intense connection, and I love it.

Bianca Minola- Imogen Poots


Imogen and Ruth would play off each other so well, I can’t even. Plus, Boyega and her would be a very interesting pair.

Lucentio-  John Boyega


Another actor I want to see in everything, including hosting Saturday Night Live. Still hopeful that they add him this season:) Boyega is so the man to play a gallant romantic lead in the Shakespeare universe.

Tranio- Ray Santiago


Ray has been killing it in Ash vs Evil Dead, and he has proven to be the best back up that you can have.

Baptisa Minola- John Hannah


Hilarious, Scotsman, and actor of Badassness. The father of Kate and Bianca is sometimes the ineffective ringleader, and sometimes a part of the chaos.

Hortensio– Paul Rudd


Because why not?

Gremio- Dylan Moran


Because I want him to play and plot with Paul Rudd. I want it bad.


Casting a Remake: Arsenic and Old Lace

One of my all time Halloween favorites is Arsenic and Old Lace, so let us do a re-imagining shall we? The dearer to my heart a classic is, the more difficult it is to find a new cast suited to portray it. This one had me going back and forth, but I think I settled on a good mix.

Mortimer: Jude Law

The modern day Cary Grant is so Jude Law. He can do hilarious leading man losing it so sweetly.

Elaine: Anna Camp

I would love to see Anna and Jude play off each other with all the Brewster craziness swirling around them.

Jonathan: Kyle MacLachlan

Yes. Just yes.

Dr. Einstein: Aubrey Plaza

Aubrey as Peter Lorre? Hell yes, she is the ultimate Halloween kitty spirit.

Aunt Abby: Stockard Channing

Aunt Martha: Dianne Wiest

Stockard and Dianne were a bomb duo in Practical Magic, and they would be perfect as the Aunts de Brewster.

Teddy: John Hodgman

The Hodge is totally up for believing that he is Teddy Roosevelt and romping around the Brewster house.

New Neighborhood Cop: Hayes MacArthur

Angie Tribeca has given some quality comedy to this world, and Hayes does clueless the absolute best.


Casting a Remake: How to Steal a Million

Here’s the thing about coming up with a dream cast for a remake: It is much too much fun for me to stop doing it. There are good remakes and bad remakes, so when it comes to the idea of more I’m pretty neutral. However, the puzzle of choosing the perfect actors for remake roles is becoming a blissful playground for me and my film obsessed imagination.

My cast picks for a remake of How to Steal a Million (1966):

Nicole – Mallory Jansen

Mallory in Galavant has become a favorite of mine, and while doing a Netflix re-watch I realized just how much she looks like Audrey Hepburn. It’s a striking resemblance, and given her humor and the ease with which she portrays royalty, she’s a natural fit for Nicole.

Simon – Paul Bettany

This was a total no brainer. Modern day Peter O’Toole? Check. Has the charm to play a brilliant art authenticator undercover as a thief? Check. Possesses a naughty smile that would make Mallory melt at 50 paces? That’s a hell yes.

Davis Leland – Jason Segel

Yeah, this is one of those weird picks that just works. Jason can do weird rich guy obsessed with art to the point of tricking Nicole to get closer to them, only to develop actual feelings for her, but not enough to choose her over said artwork. He could make the character likeable and crazy, but still stop short of making people want him to end up with Nicole. This is a fabulous instance where Jason Segel and Eli Wallach of all people intersect talents, and I love it.

Bonnet – Jean Reno

Set in his forging ways, and driving his daughter mad with worry, Jean would make the consummate unhinged Frenchman. He’s adorable, and I need it.

Head Guard – Keegan Michael Key

There are a lot of guards in this movie, but the two that matter are the Head Guard and Drunk Guard. These characters are the perfect opportunity for a fab comedy team, so who better than Key and Peele? Key of course would be the guard in charge.

Drunk Guard – Jordan Peele

I can easily picture Jordan as the guard hiding liqueur to fuel his rounds around the museum. It’s just the right call.

DeSolney – Shaun Micallef

There was an unfortunately short lived mystery series called Mr. and Mrs. Murder, in which Micallef displayed his easy charm. Thinking of who could play a modern Charles Boyer in this film and work well with Paul Bettany and Jason Segel, Shaun is the answer.


Casting a Remake: Young Frankenstein

With the passing of the great Gene Wilder, everyone has been rightly paying tribute to his work. Willy Wonka, Blazing Saddles, and Young Frankenstein have been particular favorites. This has gotten me to thinking that surely the studios will start work on a remake soon. Honestly, this is most likely not going to happen, but I instinctually see any resurgence in a films popularity as the chum to which producers are drawn to. Since the possibility has occurred to me, my curiosity as to who could even pull this off has driven me to come up with a cast list. My compulsive nature takes lists very seriously, so even though my vision of what could be will never come to pass, I believe that they could pull it off with gusto. Oh, and it has to be shot in black and white (in my imagination), that’s non negotiable.

Igor : Rachel Dratch

The thought about who in this modern era could possibly be on par with Marty Feldman is a difficult one. The physicality, humor, wicked glee, and comic delivery found in Marty are not easy qualities to live up to. In fact, there is only one person who could possibly compare – The Dratch. The Dratch is of the same magical evil fairy dust as Marty, and the more I think about it, the more it becomes obvious.

Dr. Frederick Frankenstein : Adam Driver

My Adam Driver experience has been watching The Force Awakens and his SNL hosting gig. Damn is he good. The guy has scads of chemistry, natural acting ability, and can make a skit about a cat clip show hilarious. I can picture him in the role of Frederick perfectly, and he even has the hair requirement.

The Monster : Mark Ruffalo

Mark has those amazingly emotive eyes, and we all know he can do green characters:)

Elizabeth : Leslie Mann

I almost chose Megan Hilty, but I feel that Leslie Mann could nail all that is Elizabeth while having naughty chemistry with Mark Ruffalo. It just feels right.

Inga : Briga Heelan

Briga is not only incredibly gorgeous, but has a way with comedy. Her work on Ground Floor, Cougar Town, and soon the new Tina Fey show illustrates she is more than capable.

The Inspector : Andre Braugher

Andre is the secret weapon of Brooklyn 99. Heavens, that man can do deadpan comedy so well that he deserves all of the awards.

Frau Blucher : Jessica Walter

Yes. Mallory Archer and Lucille Bluth is the right fit for Blucher. I had Alex Kingston as a possibility, but she is just too sexy. Frau B needs to be wanting the sex yet make it feel awkward.

Blind Man : Clark Gregg

Can’t you just see Clark Gregg with a long beard and cane unknowingly tormenting Mark Ruffalo?

Husband on the Train : Glen Powell

You know that run of various married couples on the train having the same conversation in different languages about their sons masturbation habit? Glen Powell needs to be the husband. I just need it.