Book Discussion

The Casting Game

You'll probably either love this page or hate it! But whatever you think the fact is that one of the most popular discussion points amongst Dunnett enthusiasts is to cast the various characters of Dorothy's books for the big screen - particularly Lymond.

Of course we all have our own rules for this game - whether we stick to actors who could play the parts now, or if we allow the idea of actors who are now too old but would have been suitable at the relevant times in their careers, whether we want blue-eyed blondes for Lymond or allow wigs, dyes and contact lenses, and whether we want native Scots speakers or not. (Though I doubt we could insist on native Bruges speakers for Niccolo!)

As far as I know Dorothy herself only ever mentioned two characters - Peter O'Toole for Lymond, and Colin Firth for Nicholas. She told me that neither of them really matched her mental image of them but were the closest she'd seen.

With the possibiity of Lymond being turned into a TV series - options have been taken and a screenplay written but nothing has been finalised yet - this discussion becomes even more pertinent. Who would you want to really see in the parts who are young enough to play them?

Personally I not a great watcher of either film or TV these days, so my own choices from the previous version of this site are now about 20 years out of date. I'm trying to get up to date but there are a few gaps in my thoughts as yet and I've dropped some of my previous ideas. I've also found that as I head towards "grumpy old man" status that I've become rather less tolerant of suggestions that produce tall actors for Lymond or Jerott or ignore the fact that Lymond and Marthe are near-identical siblings - so need to be almost interchangeable!

If you'd like to contribute to this list then I've created a blog post where comments can be added and I'll transfer them over to here.

Lymond Chronicles Characters

Character My Choices (mostly historical) Popular Choices Current Possibilities
Lymond Jason Connery, David McCallum, Adam Campbell (young Ducky in NCIS) Sting, Ewan McGregor, Steve MacIntosh, Jude Law, Tom Hiddleston  
Philippa   Anna Freil  
Gabriel Rutger Hauer    
Margaret Lennox Kate O'Mara    
Sybilla Wendy Hiller    
Jerott Aneurin Barnard Henry Cavill  
Marthe Annabelle Wallis    
Guzel Marina Sirtis    
Archie David Hayman Ben Kingsley, Ian Holm  
Dame de Doubtance Sian Philips    
Will Scott      
Watt Scott Ian Cuthbertson Sean Connery  
Christian Karen Gillan    
Adam   John Hannah  
Oonagh   Eva Green  
Piero Strozzi Gerard Depardieu    
Lord Grey Patrick Stewart    
Chancellor   Derek Jacobi, Kenneth Branagh  
Mariotta   Catherine Zeta Jones  


House of Niccolo Characters

Character My Choices (mostly historical) Popular Choices Current Possibilities
Nicholas Clive Owen Ewan McGregor, Colin Firth, Liam Neeson, Ioan Gruffudd  
Gelis Peta Wilson Natasha Richardson  
Tobie Ian Bannen    
Jordan de Riberac Robbie Coltrane (who has said he'd like the part!)    
Simon Michael York    
Anselm Adorne   Ian Richardson  
Astorre   Simon Callow  
John le Grant      
Fra Ludovico   Anthony Hopkins