Subject: Amazon's 'Lord of the Rings' cast
Posted on: 2020-01-17 13:25:07 UTC

(Crossposted from Livejournal / Dreamwidth)

On January 14th, the Amazon 'Lord of the Rings' show revealed its first? main? fifteen cast members. In the absence of any other information, I thought it'd be fun to guess who (or mostly what) they might be playing.

My initial assumptions, before looking at any of the actors: the series will take place in the Second Age, centring on the island of Numenor and its contacts with Middle-earth proper. Given the title, it's likely the story will involve Sauron and the creation of the Rings - and given the nature of the media, I suspect that we'll see some very racially-homogeneous cultures. Specifically, I predict Numenoreans to be vaguely Mediterranean, Haradrim to be black, Elves to be as white as snow, and Dwarves to be... well, 'to look dwarvish', really. Someone will probably also be playing Sauron in pretty mode.

So with that aside, let's check out the cast.

Joseph Mawle

Mawle has been known to be part of the show for some time: he's supposed to be playing Oren, the series villain. And that's, like... that's just 'Sauron', mispronounced and with the S removed (perhaps he hangs out with Aruman from the Bakshi movie). He hardly fits the description of Annatar, Sauron's 'totally a good guy' disguise, but as Sauron per se, I can see it.

Robert Aramayo

Already my theories go out the window... Aramayo was previously announced as the male lead, (code?)named Beldor or Beldar. He is almost certainly a Numenorean character, but (particularly in this picture) is almost pasty-white. Alas. :(

If Oren = Sauron, could Beld[a/o]r = something? 'Aldarion' might work - he's a Numenorean character, and has one of the most developed stories of anyone. That would mean he was playing opposite Erendis, Aldarion's historical love interest.

Markella Kavenagh

Kavenagh was announced a while back as the female lead... Erendis? She could play the bitter princess, I'm sure. Alternately, with the (code)name Tyra, we could be looking at someone whose name begins Tar- - in other words, one of the Ruling Queens of Numenor. Tar-Telperien was the queen at the time of Sauron's rise, and would make for an interesting character; but Tar-Ancalime, first Ruling Queen, was the daughter of Tar-Aldarion, our prospective role for Aramayo. Given that they coexisted for a good 150 years, and had a moderately antagonistic relationship at that, it could definitely work.

One issue with this theory is that it would leave us without an obvious Erendis among the lead cast. That's not necessarily a problem - she died a hundred years before her husband - but she's one of Tolkien's only developed characters in Numenor, so it would be weird to miss her out completely.

As far as I can tell, that's all the roles with known names, and so we will move swiftly on to:

Owain Arthur

Arthur is Welsh, and we all know that people with funny British accents are dwarves in Middle-earth. He's got the face for it, too. If there is a Middle-earth portion of the plot, he could be playing Narvi of Moria, or even King Durin (III, I believe).

Nazanin Boniadi

If we're looking at Lily White Numenor, Boniadi is certainly not white enough to have been cast as an elf (a shame; she has the face for it). She could be playing a native of Middle-earth, or she could be a Minority Numenorean. Either way, I'm positive she will be the mother of:

Tyroe Muhafidin

... because mixed-race families are pretty clearly a step too far out of the 19th century for modern media. Muhafidin is likely a Numenorean child, but could be a Middle-earther in the Tal-Elmar mode (that would be a hilariously deep cut into the Legendarium, but Tal-Elmar does live in Aldarion's day...)

Tom Budge

Most of his pictures seem to have a fairly daft moustache, but on the basis of this one I'm comfortable guessing 'snooty elf'. Perhaps he could be Elrond?

Morfydd Clark

Clark is Welsh, but somehow I don't see her playing a dwarf. I would actually guess at her being an elf - and specifically, Galadriel. She's a major player in Middle-earth in the time period of the show, and is one of the only names people coming off LotR will recognise.

Ismael Cruz Córdova

Egads - racial diversity! Is Cruz Córdova playing a native of Harad, as my Hollywood Racism theory would hold? Possibly - but given the likely northern focus of the story, I suspect he's a Numenorean of Haradrim descent instead. And, as mixed race families Aren't A Thing:

Sophia Nomvete

... Nomvete is almost certainly playing his wife.

Ema Horvath

A probable Numenorean, Horvath looks like someone who would be an alto in a musical: someone who hangs around the lead female to make her shiny hair look even more shiny.

Megan Richards

From the pictures, Richards might actually need those glasses, which will make her role slightly tricky... anyway, I'm guessing Numenorean.

Dylan Smith

That face just screams 'I've been cast as a dwarf'. Either that, or a weather-beaten mariner. One of Aldarion's crew, maybe?

Charlie Vickers

Could play an elf, but probably another Numenorean.

Daniel Weyman

Weyman is quite clearly playing the Doctor, a time traveller usually depicted by David Tennant... what? No? Okay, I'm thinking Numenorean then.

So there we have it: a bunch of Numenoreans, a couple of elves, maybe a dwarf and some native mortals, and one Time Lord. What? No? But Numenor was originally created for a time travel story, so... are you sure? ;)


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