Book Characters Who Were Cast Perfectly in Their Adaptation

Nothing compares to a perfect bookish adaptation with spot on casting. Here are some iconic book characters with the perfect actor in their shoes!

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Have you ever watched an adaptation and from that moment forward, that actor is forever associated with the role? For me, this absolutely is how The Witcher and Henry Cavill are. Talk about the perfect pair. Can you think of a book-to-screen adaptation that nailed the casting perfectly? This list could go on and on. I went and rounded up the best book characters in some of our favorite adaptations. Keep reading to see if yours made the list!

1. Robert Pattinson as Edward Cullen in Twilight

Edward Cullen
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First, how could I not include someone from the cast of Twilight? Kristen Stewart as Bella almost made the list, but I started thinking, “How iconic is Edward though!?” So, here we are. Robert Pattinson absolutely is Edward Cullen. I can’t read the books and not picture his face. I can’t watch the movies and imagine anyone else.

Book characters cast in perfect adaptations
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2. The entire Harry Potter cast

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I went into this thinking, of course I’m going to add the Harry Potter cast on there. Next thing you know, I had every single person listed, so we might as well just agree the entire cast is spot on. I think this has a lot to do with the fact most of us grew up with this cast and the movies, so they just automatically are the characters to us. There’s no other way to see it.

3. Sam Heughan as Jamie Fraser in Outlander

Sam Heughan as Jamie Fraser
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Sam Heughan as Jamie Fraser is almost evenly tied with Henry Cavill as Geralt, but Jamie Fraser takes the lead. There could never be another Jamie Fraser. He embodies this character. Whether you are watching the show or reading the book, this is such a good casting job!

Outlander book cover
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4. Henry Cavill as Geralt in The Witcher

Henry Cavill as Geralt
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Henry Cavill being a huge fan of The Witcher makes this all the more perfect. He pushed hard to play Geralt, and if you’ve played the video games, you know he actually looks exactly like the character. It is going to be a huge change when Cavill no longer fills the role of Geralt, but let’s not think about that just yet.

The Witcher book cover
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5. The entire Lord of the Rings cast

Lord of the Rings cast
cr. Geek Culture / Lord of the Rings

Is it cheating that I am including another entire cast? I don’t think so! The Lord of the Rings trilogy was made up of excellent casting, so how could I pick just one to include in this list? The way everyone became their character left imprints on each of us. I watch these at least once a year, and I highly recommend you do too.

Lord of the Rings book cover
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6. Jamie Campbell Bower as Jace Wayland in The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones

Jamie Campbell Bower as Jace Wayland
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Is anyone else still not healed from never getting the rest of this adaptation series? It hurts my heart every time I think about it. We deserved more films with Jamie Campbell Bower as Jace. He is definitely a Shadowhunter! This seemed to be a very common thing amongst YA adaptations. They do have a TV show out now with different characters, so I guess that can fill some of the hole in our heart.

city of bones book cover
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7. Christian Bale as Patrick Bateman in American Psycho

Are we even surprised by this? I can’t imagine this role any other way. Adapted from Ellis’s 1991 novel of the same name, Christian Bale takes on the role of Patrick Bateman. This absolutely could not be done by anyone else.

American Psycho book cover
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8. Jamie Dornan as Christian Grey & Dakota Johnson as Anastasia Steele in Fifty Shades of Grey

dakota johnson as anastasia steele fifty shades of grey bookstr
cr. Pinterest / Fifty Shades of Grey

You all can call me cheesy for this one all you want, but I won’t BUDGE! These two put on a phenomenal performance in all three movies adapted from E. L. James’s trilogy. I remember reading these books back in 2014 and once I saw the first movie, they looked exactly how I pictured it in my head!

Jamie Dornan as Christian grey
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9. Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister in Game of Thrones

tyrion lannister peter dinklage
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Every person I asked this question immediately gave me this answer! Can you blame them either? This casting is and always will be absolutely iconic!

10. Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister in Game of Thrones

Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister
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While there could be quite a few spot on characters from Game of Thrones, but these stand out the most, in my opinion! Lena Headey IS Cersei. There is just no one else who could’ve captured this the way she did.

11. Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark in Iron Man

Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark
cr. Catapult / Iron Man

I asked Assistant Editor Savannah Swanson for a little help here and she gave us Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark! I couldn’t agree more!

“Literally no one could ever play Stark better than him.”

— Savannah

12. Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games

Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen
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I can’t believe it took me until the end of the article to think of this one! As someone who grew up reading The Hunger Games and going to see the movies in theaters, there is no better person for this role.


Want more bookish content? Click here to read the latest on HBO’s The Last of Us! This video game adaptation absolutely nailed its casting too!

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