Casting the Stars Rain Down Mini-Series

Greetings friends, Romans, and assorted countrymen. Let’s have a bit of fun today, shall we?

Compared to my other work, the lack of character descriptions in Stars Rain Down is mighty unusual. I’m typically the sort to spend a few paragraphs describing every mole on a character’s behind in excruciating detail, but with this book I adopted a more impressionist approach. With only a few exceptions, the cast’s appearances were largely left up to your imagination and I think that worked out pretty well.

I had rather clear pictures of people, though. In fact, I had actors picked out for most roles, and I thought you might like to see who I had in mind even if you haven’t finished reading yet. So, let’s cast the hypothetical 6-hour TV mini-series version of Stars Rain Down.

Warning: These are really just suggestions, but if you’d prefer to hang onto your own imagined versions, you should probably skip this. Otherwise, read on…

Dr. Marcus Donovan
Portrayed by: Eureka’s Joe Morton
This was my single easiest and most concrete casting choice. Marcus Donovan, a middle-aged maverick astronomer, was always played in my head by veteran sci-fi actor Joe Morton. I’ve always been a big fan of Joe’s performances, and he simply is Marcus Donovan to me.

Corpsman Jack Hernandez
Portrayed by: Jonathan Sanchez(?!)
And this role was the most difficult. I originally had a young Antonio Sabato Jr. in the role, but things change. Sadly, there’s a shortage of latino actors in Hollywood, and my image of the character eventually settled on a non-actor: Giants pitcher Jonathan Sanchez. I sure hope he can act as well as he throws a ball.

Commander Alex Faulkland
Portrayed by: Boomtown’s Neal McDonough
I’m pretty flexible on this one, but I think Neal would do a fantastic job as the macho veteran spaceship captain. I’d also gladly accept Colin Ferguson.

Amira Saladin, Mars Colonist
Portrayed by: Life’s Sarah Shahi
This was another early pick, probably because I have trouble getting Sarah Shahi out of my head.

Kai, Alien Biotech Soldier
Portrayed by: Memento’s Guy Pearce
A long-time favorite actor of mine, and an excellent fit for the role. If Pearce wasn’t available, I wouldn’t mind replacing him with either Michael Wincott or Canadian sci-fi actor, Callum Keith Rennie.

Dr. Vijay Rao
Portrayed by: Super Troopers’ Jay Chandrasekhar
This is a more recent choice. I originally had Kunal Nayyar of CBS’s Big Bang Theory in this role, but he seems a bit young and I think Jay is a better match overall.

Kazuo Nagai, Mars Colonist
Portrayed by: Stargate SG-1’s Eric Steinberg
Not a terribly well-known actor, but he’s got the right look. I’d probably also be happy with Mark Dacascos.

Communication Officer Mason Shen
Portrayed by: Heroes’ Masi Oka

Technician Nils Jansen
Portrayed by: Stephen Colbert
It’s kind of an inside joke.

Technician Marco Esquivel
Portrayed by: Chuck’s Joshua Gomez

Technician Larry “Hop” Hopkins
Portrayed by: Super Troopers’ Kevin Heffernan

Dr. Juliette St. Martin
Portrayed by: Either Lena Olin or Juliette Binoche
I’m a bit torn on this. I think either actress would be a fine choice, but I see bits of each in the character.

Corpsman Leonid Nikitin
Portrayed by: Ray Stevenson of HBO’s Rome
I’m not totally stuck on this one. I had also considered a young Dolph Lundgren, and oddly, both men have played The Punisher.

Jessica “Jess” Southern
Portrayed by: The Guild’s Felicia Day
I don’t think I always had a good vision of Jack’s fiancée, but Felicia seems like a decent choice.

Colonel Galili
Portrayed by: The Mummy’s Oded Fehr
I think Oded is just fantastic, and he’s easily my top pick for the fierce battle-hardened Colonel.

And I think that’s most of the primary and supporting cast. The two major gaps are Lisa Albright and Charlie Hernandez, who I never could cast for some reason. I have a good image of each in mind, but they’re just not anyone I’ve ever seen before.

Did any of these match what you imagined? If not, who did you picture playing these characters? Leave a comment and let me know.




Filed under Stars Rain Down

7 responses to “Casting the Stars Rain Down Mini-Series

  1. tom

    nice post, nice idea, nice site! what about the soundtrack? locations? costumes? hey, you might as well!

    from one indie author to another, wishing you good luck with oktopod

    • Thanks, Tom! Really appreciate the comment and the kind wishes.

      Oddly, I had considered a soundtrack, but locations and costumes? Completely fresh ideas. I’ll have to give that some thought. 🙂

  2. Aby

    I thought the descriptions of your characters were pretty good actually. Heres how I imagined em:

    Benicio Del Toro as Jack Hernandez

    a bulkier Johnathon Sanchez as Charlie Hernandez (Boo Giants!)

    Mikhail Bukanin (the Russian guy with the eye patch on Lost) as Leo Nikitin…my favorite character btw.

    A slightly older Hayden Pannitierre as Lisa Albright

    Liu Kang as Kai

    A young Morgan Freeman as Marcus Donovan

    Richard Dean Anderson as Faulkland

    Rhyperior as those rhino looking aliens. forget what they were called. Yeah, its a pokemon! but when I read the description, this is the first thought that came to mind.

    Totally out of left field on this one but the mom from The Cosby Show as Amira Salidin. For some reason, I thought Sal was a middle aged woman. I mustve read the description wrong.


    • Oh my, this is so interesting. I just love seeing how other people imagine characters.

      Hayden seems like a pretty good choice for Albright. She definitely has the right size and build. As for Benicio, I definitely imagined Jack as a bit prettier, but Benicio could do well in the role.

      Liu Kang… from Mortal Kombat? Hmmm… Do you mean the actor who played him in the games, or in the movies (Robin Shou)? I actually forgot about my top pick for Kai: Callum Keith Rennie from Battlestar Galactica and Tin Man.

      Nice pick with the Pokemon. I haven’t followed them in a while, so I was a bit surprised to see an armored rhinoceros in their ranks. 😉

      And it’s interesting that you picked out Sal as older. I don’t think I included much about her age, so I can’t say you read it wrong. I might scan back through to see what could be giving the impression of her being older.

      Thanks for playing along; I really enjoyed reading this.

      Oh… and Go Giants! :p

      • Aby

        First off, thank you for introducing Sarah Shahi to my life! She’s a heck of a lot better pick for Sal than the old woman from the Cosby Show. lol. I guess I got the impression that Sal was a bit on the older side because she was a teenager when she first arrived on the Ares colony and I got the impression that the colony was a few decades in.

        As for Liu Kang – I imagined Kai as a bad ass Asian dude with a ninja complex but he’s supposed to resemble a Finnish person, so I guess not. You’re right on with Jay as Dr. Rao and Oded Fehr as the colonel.

        (I’m a die hard Phillies fan. We’d be on the cusp of another title if it weren’t for those darn Giants!) 😦

  3. Snipester117

    Wow, I had some very diverse picks for characters, I guess it goes to show how one can depict things from reading and watching so much sci-fi. Its amazing how the books structure could be in it’s own right be a movie script, a movie in which would be done properly,and not butchered to hell in back like some title that shall remain nameless, a mini-series would be a blast, though it would defeinetly be a brilliant success either way. All I could imagine was vivid seens, characters, plots, hell, even camera angles from movies like war of the worlds (an obvious one for some strange reason), moon, the day the earth stood still, star trek (just the new movie, not necessarily the entire era), starship troopers and somehow halo ended up in there. There are so many pick in which to infuse ideas from, it could be never ending
    Think, locations could be done on location, but with tech these days I see a lot of it being done on green screen, and mostly the mood of the feature would mesterous, almost ominous, in the end action ofcourse, you know classic sci-fi, do exactly what Star Trek did (j.j. Abrams would have a field day with this) and begin with catastrophe and destruction with fall of kai’s world, then go with Marcus on his wild goose chase, Jake and his story, separate episodes, movies or something. I have no clue, but my babling on will end here. XD

  4. Pingback: Biotech Legacy Hypothetical Cast List | Oktopod Digital Press


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