Gregor the Overlander is a novel written by The Hunger Games author, Suzanne Collins. The series contains 5 novels that centers on the Overland (above/Earth) and the Underland (below Earth), explored by the main character Gregor along with his 2 year old sister Boots and Underland Princess Luxa. I think these series would be a great live-action movie series. But the way to bring it about would cause some distance from the books – for a live-action, it may need to be darkened and changed up. But if it were to be made into a live-action animated film, it can serve the way How to Train Your Dragon does – a bit dark but still a great family-fun adventure film with a great storyline. I would prefer they do this, rather than live-action, because I feel it better fits the series. As for what studio, I would rather it not go to Disney because they don’t go that dark. I’d prefer if it went to Dreamworks. They made Shrek, Madagascar, Kung Fu Panda, HTTYD, The Croods, and Rise of the Guardians to name a few. I would prefer Gregor the Overlander to fall along the lines of Rise of the Guardians and HTTYD, or even Legend of the Guardians (Warner Bros) and Epic (Twentieth Century Fox). I’d even love it if the director of HTTYD, Dean DeBlois directed it. (But as long as they choose a good director and writer, I’ll be fine with whoever)
So here is the voice cast I imagined when (re)reading the books. (It has been awhile since I reread them so for the sake of this post I reread them)
Gregor – Corbin Bleu; This is who I imagined speaking when I read Gregor’s parts. I don’t know why, I just did. Gregor is 11 in the first few books and I honestly think they should age him up to at least 14. It’s more fitting in my opinion and he only ages one year in the entire series. Maybe they can change the amount of time between movies as well, since its only a month or two between each one. But if not Corbin, my next pick would be Dylan O’Brien. (I will update this post with picks of a live-action Underland movie series later)
Boots/Margaret – U/A; Boots is only 2 in this book. So whoever can talk like a baby should do well for this part. Or do what Despicable Me did with the character Agnes and actually get someone close to the age. I don’t know. In my opinion, she should be a couple years older, either 4 or 5. Mainly because of the amount of talking she does, I feel 2 is too young. That’s just me though.
Grace – Marsha Thomason; Grace is Gregor’s mom who hates the Underland for taking her children and actually ends up going there in the third book. Her role is minor in the first two novels but increases with the rest. Marsha, who’s from The Haunted Mansion, is who I pictured voicing Grace. I won’t lie, her voice is awesome. Her American accent in the movie wasn’t bad, and as long as she keeps that up for this she could be great!
Gregor’s dad – Andrew McCarthy; It took me awhile to actually think of someone for this role. He doesn’t really talk much in the first film (which I think should be changed for the film) but in the rest he is present. Also, I think he will have to be given a name because we never find out in the series what it is. Let’s see, Grace, Gregor, Lizzie, and Margaret. How about Lewis? Or Matthew? Haha. Anyways, I picked Andrew who I know from The Spiderwick Chronicles movie. He’s kind of what I imagined, both voice and live-action, for Gregor’s dad.
Mrs. Cormaci – Jennifer Tilly; The ever present neighbor of Gregor’s family. She also tries to get Gregor to let her read him tarot cards and hires him to help her on Saturdays as her secret way to help Gregor’s family. (It should be noted that they are quite poor, mainly because of Gregor’s dad’s disappearance) Anyways, she’s very much present in the series, typically before and after Gregor goes to the Underland each novel. He does eventually tell her about the Underland which definitely helped the family more than they thought since she now understands their situation. Anyways, I imagined Madame Leota from The Haunted Mansion for this character. But she may be too young. I’ll add someone older when I think of one later..
Lizzie – Amandla Stenberg; She’s Gregor’s younger sister, around 8 years old. She’s a smart girl but can suffer from panic attacks (one occured in the third novel). Amandla is technically too old but this is an animated movie. Jay Baruchel, for example, plays a 16 year old (now 18) Hiccup when the actor is 33 in real life. There’s also Miranda Cosgrove who plays Margo. So go Amandla!
Luxa – Cara Delevingne; I don’t know why but everyone from the Underland I pictured with some type of European accent, (luckily, they do indeed come from 1800s Europe, so accents could be kept). Cara has the perfect voice in my opinion – a bit raspy, strong accent, can hear the energy. Cara is a bundle of energy in case you didn’t know and I think it’d be fun for her to play Luxa. She’s spunky but could definitely kick some ass.
Vikus – Jeremy Irons; He’s an older gentleman who is definitely the wise one of the group. He is also Luxa’s grandfather. I felt Jeremy had a riveting voice that I could literally hear when reading Vikus’ lines.
Solovet – Helen Mirren; She’s Vikus’ wife and the head of the army. I immediately thought of Helen Mirren’s work on Legend of the Guardians as the evil owl Nyra. That’s the exact voice I pictured for Solovet. Solovet is the warrior while Vikus is more passive. I think these two as the characters would be an awesome contrast!
Henry – Ed Holcroft; He’s Luxa’s slightly older cousin who is brother of Nerissa. I definitely imagined a charming-type yet slightly arrogant fellow for Henry and that it would be so surprising to find him being a total jack-ass in the end. I had difficulty pinpointing whose voice exactly I was thinking of but finally figured out it was Charlie from Kingsman. He was the jerk picking on Eggsy if you don’t remember and that made me think of his voice for Henry.
Aurora – Abbie Cornish; Another voice actress from Legend of the Guardians who voiced Otulissa. Her soft voice was what I imagined for Aurora, who is Luxa’s bonded flier/bat.
Ares – Peter Serafinowicz; I wanted a tough/deep yet smooth voice actor for this bat. He isn’t one to yell or be aggressive but he is a feared bat because of his immense size. He’s actually kind of quiet except for when his opinion is needed or he finds something he really needs to speak of. Then BAM. Denarian Saal. The guy in Guardians of the Galaxy who didn’t want to help Star Lord but in the end he does. And dies. He also voiced Darth Maul in Star Wars. Anyways, his voice is awesome and fits Ares like I imagined it.
Nerissa – Evanna Lynch; She’s the tiny and delicate (older) sister of Henry who has the gift of prophecy. She ascends the throne after it seemed Luxa had died in the second novel. I always pictured her with a soft voice and knew Luna Lovegood of Harry Potter would work perfectly.
Ripred – Jim Carter or Liam Neeson; Ripred is a veteran fighter from the gnawers (rats) part of the Underland. He helps train Gregor and wants to stop the rats who plan to take over the entire Underland. He was described by Gregor as having a “worldly voice” and so Jim or Liam’s voices are what came to mind for the role.
Temp – Matt Lucas; I kind of imagined a soft voice for the role of Temp and Tick. Since Tick (spoiler alert) dies in the first book, I didn’t bother picking a voice actor for her. But for Temp, I really liked Matt’s work on Tweedledee and Tweedledum in Alice in Wonderland and I think it fits the quiet and reserved nature that Temp/cockroaches are.
Mareth – Jude Law; He may not have a big role in the first book but he’s present for the rest and even joins the quest in the second one. He is a respectful one but he can angry when things go wrong. He is also a warrior so the actor needs to have a bit of grit. If Law doesn’t voice Mareth, he could certainly be someone else in the movies.
Queen Athena – Rose Byrne; She is the queen of the bats who only has a small presence in the entire series. A lot of the bats I imagined having smooth voices and a slight accent (since they do adapt and learn from the Underlanders). I don’t know if Byrne would want a small role like this but hey she’s an awesome actress and should do it anyways. Haha.
Howard – William Moseley; Howard is a cousin of Luxa’s whose family would be next to rule if Luxa and Nerissa were to pass. Howard, unlike his sister, doesn’t seem to care about that. He is on the quest in the second book and is present in the following books. He seems similar to Henry (at least in Gregor’s eyes) who I both pictured to be Prince-Charming-like, only one ends up betraying the team. For Howard, I thought Peter Pevensie aka William fits the role of Howard who may be “soft” but can be stern and a great fighter.
Hamnet & Hazard – Sean Maguire & Daniel Huttlestone; I decided to put these two together because why not. Hamnet is Vikus’ son who disappeared while Hazard is Hamnet’s son, who happens to be a Halflander (Overlander/Underlander mix). Hamnet I immediately pictured having the voice of Robin Hood, meaning the actor from Once Upon A Time. Although he sadly passes away in the same novel he is introduced, I still wanted to fan-cast him because I so clearly pictured his voice. As for Daniel, the actor needs to be young. He may be too old by the time the third novel is turned into a movie, so it may need to be changed. But for now, he is who I pictured to voice Hazard!
Nike – ; She is a the princess of bats and escorts Gregor, Boots, and Grace to Regalia. She is unbonded, but grows close to Howard, who lost his bat, Pandora, in the second novel. I couldn’t think of a fan-cast for her but I’ll update when I do!
Bane – Ian McShane; In the series we see Bane grow from a baby to adult. His voice probably changes four times. So I don’t know exactly what they will do about that but for his “final form” I pictured Ian McShane voicing the villain. Bane should have a recognizable voice and McShane certainly has one, at least in my opinion.
Minor characters: These characters either have very small roles throughout the series or is only present for one book. I didn’t bother thinking of ideas for them. Tick, Gregor’s grandmother, Perdita, Dulcet, Shed & Fangor, Gox & Treflex, Queen Wevox, King Gorger, Euripedes, Andromeda, Ajax, Pandora, Twitchtip, Stellovet, Photos-glow-glow & Zap, Goldshard, Snare, Larry, Angelina, Mange & Lapblood, Doctor Neveeve, Frill, Twirltongue, Thalia, Cartesian.
So that’s it for now. I’ll add on the live-action cast some day. But for now, I want to hear your opinion! Should these books be made into movies? Should it be animated or live-action? And who should be cast?
Here’s a link to a site supporting the series to be made into a movie: http://www.iflist.com/stories/gregortheoverlander