My Scarpetta Movie Castings!

Breigh January 19, 2010 45

Around this time last year I did a post about what my choices would be for Stephanie Plum Movie Castings, if she were ever to come to the big screen.  There has been a lot of debate about it, but I still stand firmly behind my selections.

The other day I saw an article on the MOVIETASTIC website SCREENRANT about the Patricia Cornwell’s Scarpetta Series (one of my other favorites) being made into a movie.  Who did they choose to play the lead role of Dr. Kay Scarpetta?  None other than Angelina Jolie *Shock horror*  I’m not so not on board.  I have nothing against Angelina Jolie and have enjoyed her in many of her films, but she is wrong for this part. So so wrong.

Scarpetta Article on SCREENRANT

Here is the description of Kay Scarpetta from Wikipedia (may contain spoilers):

Dr. Kay Scarpetta was born in Miami, Florida. She is of Italian descent on both sides of her family, with the Scarpettas emigrating from Verona, Italy. She is blonde, and a sharp dresser, although always professional. As a young girl, she watched her father die slowly from leukemia, and the experience remained with her ever since, translating into her everyday work life, where she is surrounded by death. She is a perfectionist, an incredibly hard worker, completely immersed in her work.

Scarpetta loves to cook, particularly Italian food. She makes everything from scratch, including pasta and bread, and has a beautiful, custom-built restaurant kitchen in her home.

She was married once, to Tony Benedetti; they divorced about 6 years before the beginning of the first novel Postmortem. Since then she had a serious relationship with Mark James, who dies in a bombing in a London Tube station (in the novel Cruel and Unusual) and later Benton Wesley, who is apparently killed in Point of Origin but later reappears. In 2007′s The Book of the Dead, Scarpetta and Wesley become engaged. By the beginning of 2008′s Scarpetta, Benton and Kay are married.

Patricia Cornwell on WikipediaHaving not read the books nor being too familiar with the author, she might sound right for this role, but not to me.  She is too young, too brunette and too beautiful.  Not that I don’t imagine Scarpetta to be attractive, but I think in an attempt to bring in viewers they are overlooking what Scarpetta is really made of and trying to make her a bit more of a heartthrob than she really is.

I always saw Scarpetta as more like the author herself.  In her mid to late 40’s, classy, no nonsense, down to earth and someone you really take seriously.  Jolie really does not fit the bill here, she is too much of a young bombshell for this role, I’m afraid.  I mean while we are at it, why not get Brad in to play Marino, since we’re not giving any thought to how the characters are described in the book.   Maybe one of the Jonas brothers can make their acting debut as Benton.

I will give it a chance, and I will probably love the movie as I did this series, at least until the books started sucking later on around the Blowfly stage.

If I had my way, this is how they would fill the roles for this movie.

KAY SCARPETTA

There are a two actresses I could accept in this role.  Either of which would make a far better Kay Scarpetta than Angelina Jolie.

MARISKA HARGITAY

Mariska Hargitay, or Detective Olivia Benson to you, bitches!  This gal rocks Law & Order: SVU and I think she’d make a pretty great Kay.  Playing detective on TV doesn’t make for much of a stretch of the imagination to see her as a medical examiner.   She can play this kind of serious role and we know from watching her on SVU that she has a great range of emotion in her acting.  She could really bring Kay to life.

She has just the right amount of beauty and just the right amount of kickass.   The only worry is that she may not be able to pull off the class that Kay has that Det. Benson doesn’t.  We’ve never seen her in that kind of role to know if she can really carry it.  I think she is not one to be underestimated though.

The Alternative

Joan Allen

If you don’t recognize Joan Allen by her real name, you may remember her as Pamela Landy from the Bourne movies.  Like Mariska, we’ve seen her in Detective type roles and we know she’s got the acting chops to take on Kay.

She’s also got the look.  She’s blond, the right age range and playing a classy sort of up scale medical examiner would not be out of her reach.  I think she also has the appeal that would make her believable in any romantic situation as there is a softer side to her that we don’t see often with Mariska.

My only concern with her is that she tends to get a little too skinny at times and ends up looking lanky and pointy.  She’d need to stay healthy and strong to be able to be a good Kay Scarpetta.  Kay is no slouch but she loves to cook, nobody would believe a thin little waif in this part.

The Long Shot

There is one more person that I feel looks like I imagine Kay Scarpetta to look but there are a few doubts in regards to her pulling off the role.  I call her my long shot because while I know the deck is stacked against her, something in me REALLY likes her for this role… maybe even more than the other two.

Edie Falco

Nurse Jackie, I mean… Edie Falco, is one of my favorites.  I loved her when I first saw her playing a prison guard in OZ and then loved her a little more as a take no shit mob bosses wife in The Sopranos.  I recently fell head over heels in love with her in her latest role as a pill popping, cheating, swearing, all around mischief making nurse in Nurse Jackie.

We already know she looks great in scrubs.  She’s got the hair, the age, the ability to play the type of character who kicks ass and takes names.  She’s definitely done the Italian thing (Hello? Carmela!) Don’t you just look at her and SEE Kay?!  I know I do…

The only thing is, there are also things working against her.   Other than her role in Oz, her more popular characters have been very sarcastic and over the top.  Is she able to play a serious role and give Kay the maturity, elegance and intelligence that is needed to really make her real?   I don’t know.  I’ve never seen her in that type of role so there is no way to tell.  There’s also her voice, which could possibly be a little… shrill??… for Kay.  That’s nothing a little work wouldn’t fix though.

I don’t know, they just feel right to me somehow.  We’ll never know though because ANGELINA JOLIE has the part. God help us.

LUCY FARINELLI

This will depend on what age they have Lucy in the book.  I’m guessing that to get the most out of her, she will be in her late 20’s or early 30’s and already working for the FBI.  They would be foolish to have her still be a child or a teen in the film as a lot of Lucy’s later antics would make for great drama in the theater.

Description of Lucy from Wikipedia (maybe a little spoilery too):

Lucy is first introduced in Postmortem as a precocious 10 year old, the only child of Kay’s flighty, irresponsible, narcissistic sister. She has a natural aptitude for computers and easily learns UNIX, which she later uses while working for the FBI. She looks to her aunt Kay for stability and understanding, and although is frequently sulky in her adolescence, shapes herself into a very strong woman with Kay’s model to follow. She enters the FBI at 18, but is not well accepted due to her sexuality (she is a lesbian) and her genius IQ. Lucy has had a few long-term romantic relationships, but also several one-night stands—even a few with men. She also engages in other risky behavior, with firearms and various high-speed vehicles.

Angelina Jolie

Hello! Miscast much?!  Who is better at playing the hot, sexually ambiguous, dangerous misfit than Angelina Jolie?!  Ok, so she may be trying to edge her way out of these types of roles, wanting to take on more serious and mature characters… but shit, if the shoe fits!

Lucy is Angelina Jolie.  Angelina Jolie is Lucy.  Seriously, it’s that simple.

Re-cast please.  She will still bring all the boys to the yard.

The Alternative

Olivia Wilde

Paging Thirteen to the casting couch, STAT!

Olivia Wilde makes a great alternative to play Lucy.  She doesn’t have the action background of Jolie, nor is she as voluptuous, but she’s got the edge and the sex appeal.  If you’ve ever watched her as ‘Thirteen’ on House you’ll also know that the whole lesbian thing is nothing new to her.

If she can pull off the physical aspects of playing Lucy, which will probably include jumping out of all things high, shooting guns and just generally being dangerous… I think she can easily do all the rest.  She does angry well and that will work in her favor because Lucy tends to carry a big chip on her shoulder.   I don’t think she is the same caliber of actress as Jolie, but she would bring her own charm to the role.  Wilde (25) also has youth on her side, whereas Jolie (34) won’t be able to pull off the late 20’s roles much longer, if she still can at all.

DETECTIVE PETE MARINO

Let’s have a look at the description of Marino on Wikipedia:

In the earlier books of the series, Pete Marino worked as a homicide detective for the Richmond police department, eventually rising to the rank of Captain. Physically, Pete is big (to the point of corpulence) and balding. His high blood pressure, heavy smoking, and borderline alcoholism trouble Dr. Scarpetta, who worries about his long-term health. Marino is an excellent detective and has worked well for many years with Dr. Scarpetta, eventually joining her at the National Forensic Academy after retiring from the police force in Predator. Marino seems to have problems with women through the whole Scarpetta series stemming from a prior marriage which resulted in a son who dabbles in criminal activity. Throughout the series Marino plays a great part in the upbringing of Lucy, although it seems that he has issues with her sexuality.

Pete Marino grew up in Bayonne, New Jersey.

This may be a coincidence, or maybe I just have a bit of a love affair with The Sopranos, but only one person comes to mind when I think of Pete Marino.  He’s the man that came into my head as I read the books, and when I read the description now he’s still the first to pop into my mind.

James Gandolfini

Oh yeah, that’s right.  The big man himself… James Gandolfini!  Playing Tony Soprano, the mob boss, was no big deal for this guy.  Seeing him on the other side of the law would be great!  Marino is not your ordinary cop though, so Gandolfini’s darker side can come out and play from time to time too.

He has the physique to pull off Marino’s larger frame (he may even have to gain a few pound!) and having mastered the panic attack in The Sopranos, I think he can do the sweaty, drunken, heart attack waiting to happen that makes Marino the man he is.  Unlike the rest, there is really nothing negative about him at all.  There’s nothing that makes me think he isn’t absolutely perfect for this role.

The Alternative

brucecampbell

Bruce Campbell would be my next choice to play Marino.  I know he’s not someone who might come to the mind of most of the Scarpetta fans, but he’s good. SO good.   Sure he’s not as big as Marino is described to be, but if we are supposed to accept Jolie as Scarpetta with all the differences… there’s no reason we can’t see him as Marino too.

I recently watched a show called Burn Notice with Campbell playing the sidekick role.  A former navy seal, loving the action, women and mojitos, he’s the full package.  He could play someone with a drinking problem and he could play a cop.  If we are trying to pretty up the characters to make them for film friendly, there’s also a certain sex appeal to this guy.  He could be Marino without the bits that turn you off about him.

BENTON WESLEY

Benton Wesley according to Wikipedia (spoilers):

Benton is an FBI profiler. He and Scarpetta work together on many cases, at first on a strictly professional level. As their relationship progresses, they end up having an affair, which goes on for years. However, once Benton is no longer with his wife, he and Kay have problems because they are both too independent. In Point of Origin Benton disappears; his body is found at the scene of a fire, badly burned and showing signs of having been tortured extensively. Kay identifies the body by the Breitling watch she had given Benton. In Blow Fly it is later revealed that he is not dead, but had been hiding for years in order to trap a cunning serial killer: another body, suitably damaged, had been planted at the scene. Kay is shaken to her core, and furious at Wesley for letting her believe he was dead for so long. In Book of the Dead, Kay and Benton become engaged, and are married by the beginning of Scarpetta.

I always imagined Benton to be older than Scarpetta.  He’s distinguished looking, masculine and attractive.  Not overly masculine though, while he’s still quite serious about his job, there’s a softer side there.  I never had any one person in mind for this part, just a type.  So I had to think about this one a bit.

Richard Gere

Richard Gere was the first actor I came up with.  He’s a silver fox that can do serious and a bit of action while still being able to be a great romantic leading man.

I can see him as an FBI profiler, and I can definitely see him sweeping Kay off her feet, even if it has to be Angelina Jolie.  There aren’t many women in Hollywood that he couldn’t make fall in love with him in a film.  It’s believable and I think he’s the full package for this one.   I love him for this.

…and I’m not just saying that because he’ll always be Edward to me.

 

The Alternative

Liam Neeson

I had a hard time deciding between Liam Neeson and John Slattery for my alternative but decided in the end that Liam was my choice.  He’s more masculine and has a bit of mystery about him that would work well in the role of Wesley.

I don’t think he has quite as much romantic appeal as Richard Gere, but he makes up for it in his experience in action films.  He’d easily pass for an FBI agent and he does still have some appeal as a leading man too.

Shame he’d probably have to drop that sexy accent though.

 

CONCLUSION

Angelina Jolie should totally be in this movie, just not as Scarpetta.  There are a lot of options in regards to who can play all the supporting roles, and I hope they choose well.  I fear that they’ll try to Hollywood this whole thing up, making the characters all younger, fitter, and more attractive than they are in the book.  I understand this may need to be done at times to bring people into the theaters, but they don’t want to take everything away from what was created in the books either.   I’m surprised Cornwell agreed to Jolie and I’m very curious to see the rest of the cast when they are chosen.

Are you a fan of the Scarpetta series?  What do you think about Jolie playing her in the film?  Any ideas on who you would like for the supporting roles? I’m curious to hear who you imagine to play all of these characters too.

45 Comments »

  1. Invader_Stu January 19, 2010 at 12:12 pm - Reply

    It sounds like an interesting idea to cast your favorite books. Makes me wonder who I would cast in my favorite books.
    .-= Invader_Stu´s last blog ..Weed Plantation =-.

    • Breigh January 20, 2010 at 1:15 am - Reply

      I always try to imagine different actors playing the parts in books, I’m not sure why. I only do this with my favorite books though, ones I really connect with. I’m quite keen to see this film :) I hope that if you ever do a casting of your own that it’s books I might have read, I’d be dead curious!

  2. Alison January 19, 2010 at 2:28 pm - Reply

    I like your casting ideas. You’re right. Jolie really should have been cast for the role of Lucy. She would be perfect there.

    I’m curious about the movie, though. I’ve read most of her books, but the latest ones really have gone over the edge and I don’t like any of the characters anymore. They’re all too over the top in one way or another now. A shame, because the early books in the series were really quite good.
    .-= Alison´s last blog ..Hay-Zoos =-.

    • Breigh January 20, 2010 at 1:16 am - Reply

      I found they took a drastic turn when Blowfly came out. I loved LOVED all of the earlier books. I flew through them. After Blowfly I was really frustrated. I have to catch up on the last few still, but I’m worried they will totally turn me off this series and make me forget how much I enjoyed it in the beginning.

  3. Tara January 19, 2010 at 3:36 pm - Reply

    I’m with you almost 100%…I think Liam Neeson should be your #1 pick; although Gere does pull off the ‘older, romantic type’ role, his credibility as an FBI agent seems to be a bit of a stretch.

    Jolie is definitely Lucy, not Scarpetta.

    t

    • Breigh January 20, 2010 at 1:18 am - Reply

      I dunno I could see Richard Gere playing an FBI agent but you do have a point, he thrives in the leading man type of romantic roles. Plus Liam really does have that sort of ‘in charge’ quality about him that Gere doesn’t do as easily. I’d still take either though.

  4. Nobody January 19, 2010 at 4:24 pm - Reply

    Geez, I hope these aren’t considered “chick” books, because I really enjoy the Scarpetta series.

    Jolie as Scarpetta is wrong. Needs to be a blonde, big knockers (but not too big). Maybe Cybill Shepherd, if Cybill was about 10 years younger.

    Elisha Cuthbert would make a good Lucy.

    Who was the fat bastard on NYPD blue? That’s Marino.

    Not sure about Benton. I always pictured him as a black man for some reason.

    And just for kicks throw in Michael C Hall as a morgue worker, LOL.
    .-= Nobody´s last blog ..Nothing a little money won’t fix =-.

    • Breigh January 20, 2010 at 1:21 am - Reply

      Naw I don’t think they are chick books. All sorts of people like them from what I know. I think I’d die, roll over in my grave and come back to haunt people if Cybill Shepherd was ever given that role haha She’d be even worse than Jolie I think!

      I thought of Elisha too but I don’t thinks he can play that badass type well enough. Not like Angelina Jolie or Olivia Wilde could. MAYBE Scarlet Johansson but I’m kind of over her at the moment.

      I was reading some comments on the site I found the info on and a lot of people thought of the guy from NYPD blue as well. He’d be ok but I still prefer James Gandolfini.

      I also saw 1-2 people mentioning Benton being black. I never thought that at all. What gave you that impression?

      Michael C Hall would be great to play whatever villian they choose! Just saw him in Gamer a few weeks ago, he was fantastic and plays one hell of a bad guy!

      • Nobody January 22, 2010 at 1:55 am - Reply

        Ok, how about Jessica Alba as Lucy? She was a total badass in Dark Angel.

        As for Cybill, I picture Scarpetta looking like her, but I really don’t know about the acting style at all. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen her act. I never got into Moonlighting, it was a bit before my time.

        Gandolfini is Tony Soprano. I can’t get past him in that role. I’m not much of a fan of his, although I did like him as Tony.

        As for Benton, I’m not sure why I pictured him as black, but I always did.
        .-= Nobody´s last blog ..Nothing a little money won’t fix =-.

    • Sandra October 25, 2010 at 2:40 pm - Reply

      Benton Wesley in the books IS a black man!!!
      So no Richard Gere …

      • Andrea Slaughter November 16, 2010 at 5:04 pm - Reply

        Benton Wesley is NOT a black man in the Scarpette series!

  5. Calla January 19, 2010 at 4:47 pm - Reply

    I totally agree with you and LOVE your casting suggestions for Scarpetta!
    As for the rest of your blog, I can’t believe I have only just stumbled onto it now, after living in NL for a year and a half! I love it! I also came over here to be with my Dutch man and while I can’t imagine life without him, the bouts of homesickness are sometimes unbearable! Probably a big part of it is that I live in a small town near Leiden and it’s especially isolating. In the US I was a nurse and am now struggling to find English employment here while I try to learn Dutch. How did you find your job? (and are they hiring? ;o) Did you find also yourself getting sick constantly when you first came over? Do you drive here?
    Thanks for creating such an awesome blog!
    xCalla
    .-= Calla´s last blog ..2009 closes =-.

    • Breigh January 20, 2010 at 1:26 am - Reply

      Hey Calla, thanks for your reply! Feeling lonely and overwhelmed is something we’ve all been through, trust me! I live in a big city where there are loads of people and I felt it too. It’s just sort of something we have to struggle through in the beginning unfortunately.

      I’m not working at the moment, when I was though I usually heard for the jobs by word of mouth through other English speaking expats I knew. Both of the jobs I had here were working for companies in English. I did do the Inburgeringscursus but I don’t have my NT2 yet. Really must get around to that one day :P

      I’ve been here 10 years and I get sick more here than I ever did at home. Again, a very common complaint with expats. It must be the weather or something, or that we tend to go into hermit mode from time to time and our immune systems go into hibernation :)

      I don’t drive, but my husband does. I’d like to get my license eventually but it’s so expensive. We always seem to find other things we need to put the money towards.

      If you ever want to chat / vent etc let me know, we can hook up on MSN or email or something. I know sometimes it definitely helps to talk to someone who has been there so you know you’re not crazy!

  6. Nicola January 19, 2010 at 8:33 pm - Reply

    Wrong wrong wrong!!! Ang is absolutely not Scarpetta, I had the same image as you, along the lines of the author. I think maybe Ang is a little too old for Lucy perhaps, but they could make that work. They cannot make Scarpetta work with her.

    I haven’t been reading the books lately either, I don’t know if I got sick of the same old storyline or if I wasn’t enjoying the character development. I’ll definitely see the movie though, just to see.

    Your other picks are pretty spot on though, I’d go with Liam Neeson though, like you say a bit more mystery. I think Richard is too open and is better suited to romance movies. I also think if it HAS to be Ang as Scarpetta, then she and Liam would be a better fit as the Wesley/Scarpetta combo. Will be very interesting to see how it all works out!
    .-= Nicola´s last blog ..New Years Challenge – Task #48 52WoC =-.

    • Breigh January 20, 2010 at 1:28 am - Reply

      I think the probably could make it work with Ange as Lucy too, but JUST! Girl Interrupted aged Ange would have been perfect. If they could pull it off now they’d just make it in time because she is breaking into a new age bracket now where she’ll be playing the mom, not the daughters. Still, that doesn’t make her a Scarpetta either!

  7. Melissa January 28, 2010 at 8:01 pm - Reply

    Wow. I own all of the Scarpetta books and they are my favorite series. I’ve thought about movie casting quite a bit, as well, and have a few more suggestions for you:
    I have thought about several actresses for Scarpetta, but keep coming back to Jodie Foster. She would be perfect in every way. Angelina Jolie is too young to play Kay and too old to play Lucy. I could see her as the Carrie Grethen psychopath character, though. I’ve always pictured Michael Chiklis as Marino, although he’s really not tall enough. Benton has always brought a cleaned-up version of Sam Elliott to mind for me. I like Richard Gere for it, too. I love Liam Neeson, but he is not handsome enough. Benton is a very good looking man. And where on earth did the Benton-as-a-black-man idea come from? I would love it – but it’s not happening. Lucy has always been the most elusive for me. Because she ages so much (and so quickly) in the books, it’s hard to pick one and stick with her, because there’s always a hot new thing on the horizon. Mariska would actually have been perfect for Lucy about 10 years ago. For now, as a Lucy in her 20s, I could see this going to an unknown, or up and coming actress.

    • Breigh February 1, 2010 at 9:48 am - Reply

      I admit, Jodie foster did come to my mind too but something about her holds me back. She didn’t feel right for me for Scarpetta for some reason. I think she lacks a kind of femininity that I imagine Kay to have. She’s not ‘girly’ but she’s very womanly and sometimes I find Jodie Foster to be sort of tom boyish or ambiguous. Plus, I couldn’t imagine her with any of the leading men I had in mind.

      It’s so funny you mentioned Sam Elliot because he came to my mind too!! I find him very sexy but I knew he’d never pass as Benton because Benton is more hollywood handsome than the rough around the edges mystique sort of handsome you get with Sam.

      I don’t see Michael Chiklis as Marino though, especially since he’s gotten in to shape doing The Shield and such. Maybe if he was like he was in The Commish, but that’s not who he is anymore.

  8. gc February 10, 2010 at 7:41 am - Reply

    I have to agree with you about the last few books, I made myself read them because I had once loved the series, but no more! Enough is enough! As for Ange getting the part, it might not be too bad, however, I too thought of Cornwell as Scarpetta. I like your idea, maybe even love your idea of Edie Falco as Scarpetta, she just fits! BTW, I too like to put faces to my favorite characters in books.

  9. ursula February 24, 2010 at 7:16 pm - Reply

    I totally agree. Angelina is PERFECT for Lucy. Completely wrong for Kay. What the hell!? This may be the most dissappointing casting I’ve seen in a long time.

    • Andrea Slaughter November 16, 2010 at 5:14 pm - Reply

      I defintely see Edie Falco as Scarpetta, she has a feminine, but tough air about her that could pull it off, As for Benton Wesley, I always pictured the guy who plays John Munch on SVU as him. Lucy, well, Angelina Jolie could pull that off, but we have to remember that Lucy is gay, so I always pictured her as being more androgynous. Jolie has too much of a slutpuppy attitude. Marino, the guy who played Tony Soprano would be perfect!

  10. aaron March 6, 2010 at 10:04 pm - Reply

    I agree with all the anti jolie comments just not scarpetta for me i always thought maybe glenn close but too old now wade williams (bellick in prison break) for marino would be perfect in my eyes i would of thought a young jodie foster for lucy but a newcomer would prob be more sensible richard gere is good for benton though had not thought of that

  11. Beverley Crossley April 2, 2010 at 9:20 pm - Reply

    I thnk Pete Marino should be played by Dennis Franz who played Sipowicz in NYPD Blue. Thats who I always imagine when I read the books. Always wondered what Benton would look like, in the scarpetta Factor he is described as looking like Crawford from Silence of the lambs. He was played by Glenn Scott. I much prefer Richard Gere

    • Breigh April 3, 2010 at 9:22 am - Reply

      Oh god, I don’t see Dennis Franz at all. Firstly, he’s quite short. I see Marino is quite a big guy both in height and girth. Also, I imagine him as someone who has the potential to be handsome but has let himself go and doesn’t take care of himself. No matter how much weight Dennis Franz lost, he’d never be attractive. He’s also just not manly enough. I’d think Marino has quite a presence, which Franz doesn’t really..

  12. Megan April 24, 2010 at 10:42 pm - Reply

    Mariska Hargitay is exactly who I have pictured when I read the books. Along with Bruce Campbell as Marino. I see Benton as a sexy Drew Pinsky and an Angie Everhart type as Lucy.

    • Sandra October 25, 2010 at 2:45 pm - Reply

      No! Scarpetta is blonde and later she turns grey.
      It is written in the books! And Benten def is black – read carefully people.

  13. Fernanda June 9, 2010 at 2:30 am - Reply

    I always pictured Marg Helgenberger playing Scarpetta. She is beautiful, classy, blond and does a great job as Catherine Willows in CSI. Angelina is completely wrong for this part!

  14. Luanna July 6, 2010 at 12:14 pm - Reply

    Okay! So cranky about this! I am a big Cornwell and Scarpetta fan (however, recently I feel she has assassinated some of her characters). My Mum told me about this travesty (as much as I kind of like Angelina). We both agreed Angelina would be better suited to the role of Lucy, I had no idea it was already set! Bugger! My picks for main characters are: yep, Ange for Lucy is perfect, she has that same rebellious ambiguous edge; Robin Wright Penn for Scarpetta (a strong actress without all the brouhaha); Jeremy Ratchford for Marino (he plays Nick Vera in Cold Case, he was always the image in my head when I pictured Marino and he could easily do the character of Marino justice) and Benton I am still not sure about (I always pictured him as the Chief from Get Smart!) Perhaps Tim Robbins? I can’t stand Richard Gere, but that is just my opinion!

  15. Andrea Slaughter November 16, 2010 at 5:18 pm - Reply

    I have read ALL of the Scarpetta series, and can see absolutely no indication that Benton Wesley is black.

  16. Lola November 21, 2010 at 12:36 am - Reply

    I know I’m a little behind finding this site but felt I had to comment anyway. I have read all the Scarpetta books and never once pictured Angelina Jolie as either Kay or Lucy. I would have possibly picked Jodie Foster or Robin Wright Penn as Kay, not sure about Lucy there aren’t too many red headed actresses that I feel could play her so it would have to be an up and coming actress. I have always pictured Marino as James Gandolfini, he is the only one who I would be 100% sure about, Benton on the other hand could be Richard Gere although Liam Neeson would also be good, bit of a long shot but add a few years and some grey hair on Patrick Dempsey you may have Benton…Also having read all of the series at least 2 or 3 times I have never once seen any mention of Benton being black…perhaps Sandra could say which book she has seen this written in?

  17. Mandie December 14, 2010 at 9:34 pm - Reply

    Robert Redford is Benton. More so in his younger days but in my mind he is exactly who I picture as I read.

  18. Leanne January 11, 2011 at 9:07 am - Reply

    I think Jolie works well as Kay Scarpetta. Kay Scarpetta is a very strong woman and Jolie is a very strong woman herself. As for age, the series spread over about 20 years, so it would depend on which book they were basing the movie. Also, it’s Hollywood – they can age people up and down as they want.

    Although I do agree that I have pictured Cornwell herself as Scarpetta. She would be the best option. I think many authors design the main character after themselves or someone very close to them.

  19. dawning March 13, 2011 at 9:17 am - Reply

    Totally agree with your casting ideas. Angie is all wrong for the part. Mariska would be a perfect Scarpetta, or for that matter Patricia Cornwell herself would be perfect. Either one of the guys you picked would also be perfect for the roll of Benton… that would be WOW!! Don’t really care much for Lucy, however it comes out… Angie is too old to play Lucy now… I look forward to see what they come up with.

  20. Jones June 11, 2011 at 12:32 am - Reply

    i would like Glen Close as Scarpetta, some of the made for tv movies with Scarpetta haven’t been great and i think thats down to the casting.
    Glen Close – Kay Scarpetta
    Tom Selleck – Benton Wesley
    Jodie Foster – Lucy
    James Gandolfini – Marino

  21. number8isgr8 August 10, 2011 at 5:48 am - Reply

    I like the Actresses that you picked. as far as who should play Benton…Personally, I have always pictured Mark Harmon.(yes,Gibbs from NCIS.Mark Harmon would be the perfect Benton

  22. jen October 12, 2011 at 1:58 am - Reply

    I always pictured Scott Glenn as Benton Wesley…He was the FBI profiler in Silence of the Lambs…

  23. WHITTINGTON CAT November 23, 2011 at 5:16 pm - Reply

    I’m a great fan of the Scarpetta books, the thought of Angelina playing Kay is an awful thought, she just does not suit the role, how about Meryl Streep, I think she would make a great Kay Scarpetta, your other suggested castings I can quite happily go along with

  24. Nancy January 22, 2012 at 5:33 am - Reply

    Definitely Mariska for Kay,
    Angelina for Lucy
    But I see John Goodman for Marino
    Mark Harmon as Benton

    Looking forward to the movie.
    Is Angelina an absolute for Kay?

  25. Miller April 11, 2012 at 11:53 pm - Reply

    I have been a fan of the books for years and have often thought Mariska Hargitay would be the perfect choice to play Scarpetta.

  26. JJ April 24, 2012 at 4:50 am - Reply

    I could not agree with you more on the Angelina Jolie part, it may just spoil it for, I never considered Mariska but now u mention it she would be a great fit, love the idea of Olivia Wilde as Lucy!

  27. Dani May 4, 2012 at 2:49 pm - Reply

    I am a great fan of Scarpetta series and I definitely agree with your cast- but how about Kristen Scott Thomas as Kay? She has a smart, proud and dignified appearance, I always imagine Kay to be ( although she has Italian roots)..

  28. CN August 7, 2012 at 3:09 pm - Reply

    I also pictured Cornwell as Scarpetta, but I do agree that Robin Wright or Kristin Scott Thomas would work. I can’t work up much enthusiasm for Benton who comes across as a cold fish. However, I always pictured a beardless William Petersen (Grissom from CSI). Probably not good looking or tall enough but I can’t change that picture in my head. John Slattery (Mad Men, Desperate Housewives) or Mark Harmon would fit. Angelina is too old for Lucy but I can definitely see Olivia Wilde in that role.

  29. Jamie November 15, 2012 at 4:10 pm - Reply

    I agree that Angelina Jolie is all wrong for Kay, but, sometimes actors can surprise us. Most americans HATED the idea of Vivian Leigh playing Scarlet O’hara. I, too, always sort of pictured Cornwell as Kay, but wouldn’t Gillian Anderson be a good choice? She is about the right age, small in stature, and could be made pretty blonde. Wesley is a tough choice. I agree John Slattery looks perfect, but he is so well known I’m not sure I could ever really picture him as Wesley. And the guy from NYPD Blue is probably too small for Marino. Marino is supposed to be a tall man.

  30. Lest November 18, 2012 at 1:44 am - Reply

    Lucy would be the one most difficult to cast, I think. They’d need to find someone who has the right balance of fragility and toughness, so I’m thinking an unknown actress, but to visualise this “Lucy-ness”, I always see Noomi Rapace. Lucy and Lisbeth Salander are alike in many ways, too.

    Scarpetta is easy, though – Jodie Foster would be perfect for the role. If Jane Curtin weren’t such a comic-type actress she’d have worked as well.

    Mark Harmon would suit the character of Benton Wesley, I can’t see anyone but him when I think of Wesley.

    At some other site, it was suggested that Ron Perlman might make a good Marino, and I suppose Gandolfini too.

    The important thing is obviously the characters need to be believable, which I can’t see Jolie being. The movie might not attract the fans of the series (I won’t see it if Jolie’s in it) but gain those fans of Jolie’s, and those who haven’t read the books.

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