Perfectly cast beauties

Right: Tilda Swinton as Jadis the White Witch in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (ok, not exactly a conventional beauty)

How about Naomi Watts in King Kong?

Brian

I slightly disagree with you about Liv Tyler but the reason I posted is to emphasize that, in addition to being attractive, an actress’ performance and presence in a role greatly affect things. The fact a hot-looking character is played by a hot-looking actress won’t matter much if the particular hot-looking actress has the acting ability and personality of a box of Kleenex.

I don’t think Uma’s face is very pretty either, but it fits Venus very well. She looks very Roman. The resemblance is remarkable to the goddess’s face in Botticelli’s The Birth of Venus. Based on the still provided above, I’d say that’s the Venus they were trying to emulate.

I think this typifies how you have to do this. You can’t find someone who will be everyone’s ideal beauty. What you have to do is figure out the type that your characters and setting would regard as beautiful, and find the prettiest version of that.

Or maybe they were just lucky they had a very famous painting of Venus that fits modern sensibilities about attractiveness. Most of the ones of Helen of Troy are quite pudgy and/or masculine. The best I can source is this one, which is really rather late, while there is this one, which actually seems to feminize her.

Ms. Cruger doesn’t look too far off, IMHO. They just should have prettied up her hair and makeup a bit, and made her more obviously different from every other woman in the film.

I remember that an early choice for the role of Helen was French-Corsican model Laetita Casta, who I think would have been a much better choice than Kruger. I mean, I don’t know much about her acting skills, but her features are much more classical, and her figure more… Mediterranean.

I would submit Catherine Zeta-Jones in Chicago.

And, since I think males should count, Christian Bale in American Psycho.

How about Jill in Brazil? You need someone who’s believable as a tough truck driver, and as Sam’s dream girl. I’ve seen a list of actesses who were considered, but that book is packed away at the moment. I like Kim Greist in the role, but if I remember correctly, Terry Gilliam wasn’t happy with her performance.

I would completely agree with Tilda Swinton as Jadis and Cate Blanchett as Galadriel - perfect. I also loved Kate Winslet in Titanic. Catherine Zeta Jones in Zorro was also pretty inspired.

Sorry, can’t agree with Emily Deschanel dressed up as WW. Every time I watch Bones, I spend a lot of time thinking, wow, that chick has a weird face (beautifully colored eyes, though).

But tastes do differ, I still think that the first time I saw Uma Thurman rise up as Venus (I had never seen her before) I thought she was spectacularly beautiful. Now, when I see candid shots of her in magazines, I don’t think she’s nearly as gorgeous. That scene, though, wow.

Surely top of the list for superb casting has to go to Elizabeth Berkley in Paul Verhoeven’s Showgirls. Brain dead actress, brain dead part.

You mean a hare lip. As in rabbit. Not as in moustache.

I think Michelle Pfeiffer was perfectly cast as Isabeau, the hawk in Ladyhawke.

I also liked her as Catwoman in Batman Returns, but my unfamiliarity with the comics makes me unsure if that was perfect casting, or just a nice feline performance.

Nicole Kidman as Satine in Moulin Rouge!

Wow - yes, yes, yes! Fantastic.

Uma Thurman in Beautiful Girls.

Kate Beckinsale in Underworld. Absolutely sublime.
And, jsut my 2c… Liv Tyler in most everything I’ve seen is just wrong. Pretty girl, but I’m not a fan of her acting or voice at all. Ruined the scenes she had in LOTR.

Agreed. I saw her at my company picnic last summer, and she’s still fantastically hot. For a woman who is almost sixty, she’s got incredible legs.

I’d have to disagree, if you’re suggesting Emily Deschanel could play Wonder Woman.

It’s not that she isn’t a lovely young woman; she’s very pretty. But she is not the right look for the part; she’s a small, thin actress with little muscle definition. She can play lots of roles well, but Wonder Woman, specifically, is supposed to be a beautiful but tall, very muscular, athletic woman.

Helen was supposed to be blond. Are there a lot of blond beauties in the Mediterranean these days?

I’ve alway thought this was just so-so casting. Buttercup was supposed to be the * most beautiful woman in the world *. Robin Wright was (is?) very attractive but you could put her in a number of Hollywood rooms where she won’t even make the podium. At the time they were doing the movie, Darryl Hannah was at the top of her ethereal otherworldly beauty fame from Splash. Physically, I think she would have been the perfect Buttercup.

Well, they did leave that bit out of the movie. She rises up through the ranks to become the most beautiful woman in the world during the course of the book, but in the movie she’s presented as a very beautiful woman but never dubbed the MOST beautiful.

She’s also the only young woman in the entire movie, so from what we see she might well be the most beautiful woman in that world – her only on-screen competition is a couple of hags.

To follow Maiira’s lead in nominating men, I think Cary Elwes was perfect as Westley. Handsome and dashing. I’ve never understood why he didn’t become a bigger star. He’s been working steadily since TPB, but mostly in supporting roles.

Brigitte Bardot in Et Dieu… créa la femme

Claudia Cardinale in Cartouche (she was even more beautiful in C’era una volta il West, but other beauties could have played the role as well).

Gina Lollobrigida in Fanfan la Tulipe und Notre Dame de Paris.

Audrey Tautou in Le fabuleux destin d’Amélie Poulain

Faye Dunaway in The Thomas Crown Affair

Marilyn Monroe in Some Like It Hot

Rita Hayworth in Gilda.

Anita Ekberg as Sylvia in La Dolce Vita.