11 Most Controversial Casting Decisions!

(c) Warner Brothers/courtesy Everett Collection

Sometimes actors and actresses are cast in roles that fans and critics don’t necessarily agree with. Fans are very vocal about their frustration with certain casting decisions and, once the choice has been made, it’s difficult to change their minds. While some of the stars below surpassed everyone’s expectations, others were predictably poor in their roles. Here are the 11 most controversial casting decisions in recent films!

11. Ben Affleck in Superman vs. Batman

Ben Affleck – who replaced Christian Bale as Batman in Superman vs. Batman – has received a lot of flack for being cast in this role. Fans even launched an online petition demanding that Affleck be replaced. Even though he was warned about fan backlash, the Oscar-winning screenwriter, who has endured his fair share of controversy of the course of his career, wasn’t put off and actually exceeded fans and critics’ expectations. He was considered one of the best parts of the movie!

Zack Snyder /© Warner Bros. / Courtesy Everett Collection

10. Tobey Maguire in Spiderman

Even though Spiderman received positive reviews, some critics had mixed feelings about casting Tobey Maguire. In the end, he proved to be a good fit for the role and fans, for the most part, accepted Maguire as the lead character in the film. Kit Bowen from Hollywood.com said, “Spider-Man is funny, poignant and true to form with Tobey Maguire and company fleshing out the famed comic-book characters with aplomb.”

(c) Columbia Pictures/courtesy Everett Collection

9. Hayden Christensen in the Star Wars Prequels

Hayden Christensen’s portrayal of a young Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader in Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones and Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith was disparaged by fans and critics alike. For both films, he earned two separate Golden Raspberry Awards for Worst Supporting Actor, reinforcing the fact that he was obviously the wrong choice for the role.

Everett Collection

8. Denise Richards in The World is Not Enough

In The World is Not Enough, Denise Richards played Christmas Jones, a nuclear physicist who was assisting James Bond on his mission. Unfortunately (and understandably), critics didn’t find her convincing as a nuclear weapons’ expert. She won a Worst Supporting Actress at the 1999 Razzie Awards as a result.

Source: James Bond Wiki

7. Daniel Craig in James Bond

When it was announced that Daniel Craig was chosen to portray James Bond in Casino Royale, significant controversy followed. Fans and critics argued that Craig did not fit the tall, dark, handsome and charismatic image of Bond that viewers expected. Some were so disappointed with the casting that they threatened to boycott the film in protest. In spite of all criticism, after the film was released, Craig proved everyone wrong, as his performance was critically acclaimed.

©Sony Pictures/Everett Collection

6. George Clooney as Batman & Robin

George Clooney has enjoyed a long and successful career in Hollywood; however, his career almost ended after Batman & Robin. Critics panned the film and the Oscar-winning actor’s portrayal of Batman was panned as well. He and Chris O’Donnell were even nominated for a Razzie Award for Worst Screen Couple. Ouch!

Everett Collection.

5. Ryan Reynolds in Green Lantern

Ryan Reynolds has said that he has no interest in reprising his role as Hal Jordan from Green Lantern, which is good because many fans think that he was totally wrong for the role to begin with. Many fans and critics agree that the film itself was less-than-impressive and there really wasn’t much that could have saved it.

Everett Collection

4. Kate Bosworth in Superman Returns

Even though Superman Returns was well received by critics, Kate Bosworth’s portrayal of Lois Lane was not. Anthony Lane of The New Yorker noted, “The new Lois Lane, Kate Bosworth, is not a patch on Margot Kidder, or, for that matter, on Teri Hatcher, in the TV series” and Mick LaSalle of the San Francisco Chronicle felt that Bosworth – who was only 22-years-old at the time – was too young to portray Lois Lane.

(c) Warner Brothers/courtesy Everett Collection

3. Tom Cruise in Interview with the Vampire

When Tom Cruise was cast as the passionate, violent and seductive vampire Lestat in Interview with the Vampire, the author Anne Rice voiced her objections, recommending Rutger Hauer for the role. After seeing the film, Rice changed her position. “That Tom did make Lestat work was something I could not see in a crystal ball. It’s to his credit that he proved me wrong.”

Everett Collection

2. Angelina Jolie in Alexander

The movie Alexander received mostly negative reviews and it totally bombed at the box office. One major problem with the film was casting Angelina Jolie, who is only one year older than Colin Farrell, as his character’s mother. It didn’t help that her performance was lacking as well – she received a Razzie nomination as a result.

Everett Collection

1. Zoe Saldana in Nina

When Zoe Saldana was cast as Nina Simone in the biopic Nina, fans and critics went wild. One online petition, which collected more than 10,000 signatures, argued that Saldana didn’t look enough like the singer/activist. Even Simone’s daughter agreed “that appearance-wise [the fashionable actress] is not the best choice.”

© RLJ Entertainment / courtesy Everett Collection



Cate has a B.A. and an M.A. in English Literature and has been the Managing Editor of Fame10 for more than 6 years. Despite having a love for the works of Thomas Hardy, Leo Tolstoy and Lord Byron, she also has an intense fascination with pop culture. When she isn’t writing for Fame10, she’s planning her next big adventure in Southeast Asia.