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10 Times Live Action Movies Put a Creative Spin on Popular Characters

While reading a book, we often imagine the characters in our heads. But when these books turn into movies, things go a little differently than they did in our minds. For instance, we’ve seen Sherlock Holmes played by the likes of Robert Downey Jr., Henry Cavill, and even Johnny Lee Miller. Each actor lent their own individuality to the role, and we’d be hard-pressed to pick a favorite. On that note, here are even more surprising casting choices in live-action movies that we ended up loving as well.

1. Jason Momoa as Aquaman

DC fans likely know Aquaman as a blond-haired demi-God with rippling muscles. The movie franchise cast Jason Momoa as Aquaman/Arthur Curry, with one big difference — black hair and a beard instead of golden locks.

2. Samantha Bond and Naomie Harris as Moneypenny

If you read Ian Flemings’ Bond novels, the romantic chemistry between James Bond and Miss Moneypenny is missing. In the movies, there is a little something between them, although, different production houses have portrayed the character differently. In Bond movies starring Pierce Brosnan, Samantha Bond plays Moneypenny.

In the more recent franchise, starring Daniel Craig, Naomie Harris took over the role and, in a twist, is also shown to be a field agent rather than just a secretary.

3. Salma Hayek as Ajak

Salma Hayek played Ajak in MCU’s Eternals, but the comics portray the character very differently. In Marvel Comics, Ajak is a 6’1″ male. The female twist to the character came as a pleasant surprise to most fans.

4. Naseeruddin Shah and Patrick Stewart as Captain Nemo

Jules Verne created the character Captain Nemo/Prince Dakkar in his novels. Nemo is known to be a mysterious undersea explorer and the son of an Indian king, and in the movies, he’s been portrayed both by an Indian actor, Naseeruddin Shah, as well as the very versatile Patrick Stewart.

5. Idris Elba as Heimdall

In MCU, Heimdall guards Asgard, appointed by King Odin as the sentry of the Rainbow Bridge known as the Bifrost. In the comics, Heimdall is of Nordic origin, as is his sister, Sif, and has the alias, “White God.” In the movies, Heimdall is portrayed by Idris Elba who put a pleasant spin on the character.

6. Michelle Pfeiffer and Halle Berry as Catwoman

The infamous Catwoman is both an ally and enemy to Batman in the world of DC and has yet again been portrayed by some very different actors over time. While Michelle Pfeiffer managed to give a villainous performance in Batman Returns, Halle Berry served as a vigilante Catwoman, which was missing Batman overall.

7. Emma Watson and H.E.R. as Belle

Anthony Behar / Sipa USA / East News, ANGELA WEISS / AFP / East News

The Disney movie, Beauty and the Beast, shows a brown-haired Belle copied to a tee in the live-action eponymous movie by Emma Watson. But today, H.E.R. is set to play Belle in ABC’s upcoming hybrid special in celebration of the thirtieth anniversary of the movie, and fans cannot wait to see the new interpretation.

8. Judi Dench and Ralph Fiennes as “M”

Photo12 / East News, Supplied by Capital Pictures / East News

The character of “M” in James Bond movies is that of a leader, the head of MI5. It has been portrayed mostly as male characters until Judi Dench made a rather surprising entry in GoldenEye as a female “M” and continued her role from Pierce Brosnan’s exit to Daniel Craig’s entry as James Bond in Casino Royale.

After the demise of her character in Skyfall, Ralph Fiennes becomes the new “M,” and the character twists are beautiful to watch.

9. Kirsten Dunst, Emma Stone and Zendaya as MJ

Columbia Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection / East News, AFP / East News, Invision / Invision / East News

Just like Spider-Man has been portrayed by the likes of Tobey Maguire, Andrew Garfield, and Tom Holland, his love interests have changed over the movies as well. Kirsten Dunst and Emma Stone played Mary-Jane, while in the new Spiderverse, it’s Zendaya as MJ.

10. Halle Bailey as Ariel

© hallebailey / Instagram, Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection / Everett Collection / East News, © hallebailey / Instagram

We’ve all seen Ariel, the Little Mermaid, as a pretty, petite redhead with a temper. In Disney’s new live-action movie, The Little Mermaid, Halle Bailey has been roped in to portray Ariel, making this a casting choice that’s very different from the cartoon but no less welcome.

Which of these, or any other casting decisions, left you the most impressed or moved? Would you like to see an actor portray a particular role that no one has ever imagined till now?

Preview photo credit Walt Disney Co. / Courtesy Everett Collection / Everett Collection / East News, hallebailey / Instagram
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