Is it okay to recast Narnia actors? | Talking Beasts

We have revamped the NarniaWeb podcast, now officially titled “Talking Beasts.” From now on, we will be posting every two weeks! Watch for our next episode on Monday April 17 (here and on YouTube).

In this episode: William Moseley is “100%” up for playing Peter again. How excited are you about that? He also seemingly announced that The Chronicles of Narnia: The Silver Chair will release in late 2018. Producer Douglas Gresham later told NarniaWeb he hopes for this, but it is not official. Glumpuddle, Mel, and Dot sort though the news and speculate about the three Narnia films that will hopefully follow The Silver Chair.

Think you can stump a NarniaWebber? Submit Narnia trivia questions to podcast[at] with the subject “Stump” (please do not include the answer). Glumpuddle will be the contestant in the next episode.

We want to hear from you! Post a comment below, send general questions and feedback here, or contact us individually: Glumpuddle[at], Mel[at], Dot[at] NarniaWeb is also on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


53 Responses

  1. Aslan_7 says:

    Great podcast!

    I think the The Horse and His Boy should be next, and I'd like a moderate amount of attention on the Pevensies because it is their time to rule. However, what makes it the most unique is that the storyline is, as you said, so simple and follows 2 young people and 2 horses. The journey of a hero, the escape from troubles to better pastures. Someone recently commented (credits to that person) that Aravis and Shasta are basically refugees seeking a better place to start a new life so it's a great message for our time. There will also be so much diversity in casting and in landscape. It will be really exciting for people who have one image of Narnia.

    I think we can treat HHB like a completely different movie and not let the others effect it. I think it's the lesser known one but it would be a shame to leave it to the end. Having MN and LB in the end will keep up the suspense that keeps us wanting more.

    Realistic talking horses shouldn't be a problem. Especially since the last Narnia films, so many developments in technology have occurred. I think what we need are really talented actors to play Aravis and Shasta who can interact well with the horses.

    • MelanieJoy says:

      Aslan_1 – I too would love to see this one made into a movie, but I fear that the current political state of the world, people would not be able to see past reality and fiction, therefore warranting too much racist attention. Sad, it really is a beautiful story.

    • Glumpuddle says:

      There are certainly more difficult things to achieve that realistic computer-generated horses… if you have he budget for it. And I think, at this point, we are all assuming the rest of the films will have modest budgets.

      • Michael says:

        Wait, why do we assume the rest of the films will have modest budgets? The Narnia films have always brought in more money, right? I just thought that the contract and moratorium stopped them from creating Narnia films, not the lack of funding or interest. Am I wrong?

      • Glumpuddle says:

        Two factors:

        1) PC and VDT both had huge budgets and disappointing box office.
        2) Gresham seems very intent on retaining control of the script. This almost always means a smaller budget. The bigger the budget, the more difficult it is for one person to stay in control. Because more money means more people trying to protect their investment.

      • FilmReel says:

        The reason why they stopped making Narnia movies was because PC and VOTDT's box office numbers were going down and the budgets were so much.

      • Aslan_7 says:

        I feel like HHB may be the cheapest from all of them. It is the shortest book.

      • Kiwi Rob says:

        I think Douglas Gresham keeps a tight control on the scripts because, as the step son of CS Lewis and a Christian, he is more interested in the integrity of Lewis' story line than major movie companies would be.

    • Hwinfan8 says:

      I agree HHB would be amazing if it was next! I hadn't thought of it like refugees… I wonder if they would give any time talking about how Hwin, Bree, and Shasta are "illegally" in Calormen? or trying to cross illegally into the North? Could get political quickly like MelanieJoy said… But it would be a great dialogue and so relevant to a lot of current events.

      I agree CGI today would make talking animals pretty realistic, and the completely different feel might be refreshing for the series.

    • Kiwi Rob says:

      Sadly, I don't think you could ever make Horse and His Boy, or even The Last Battle. The Calormen's are far too obviously modeled on desert dwelling Arabs and their religion similar to Islam. In this PC world no major movie company would touch it. Bring on the Silver Chair (which I am currently listening to the Radio Theatre version) and the Magician's Nephew

      • Anhun says:

        In what way does Tash worship resemble Islam?

      • NarniaFan says:

        On the contrary, I think HHB will be made because of how diverse our society is becoming. As long as they tweak the way the Calormens are portrayed by leaving out the racism, but still depict the beauty of the Calormen culture and the desert. The Telmarines in Caspian were of Spanish descent, yet that doesn't mean they're all bad.

        Moreover, Aravis is a Calormene princess and yet she is accepted by the Narnians/ Archenlanders as their future queen. A great woman of color and role model, and she marries Cor. A mixed race marriage in Narnia certainly is quite progressive!

  2. Hwinfan8 says:

    I wouldn't want to see William Moseley come back. I thought objectively he was a very mediocre actor, and if we want the mainstream media to accept the next films as worth watching we would need a great cast. I totally agree Skandar was the best actor of the Pevensies, but I just don't think we should hold onto the nostalgia of the original 4 and compromise the quality of actors/actresses.

    • Narnia girl says:

      I think William Mosely should be recasted and they should recasted everyone else as well.

    • Narnian girl says:

      I think William Mosely should be recasted and they should recasted everyone else as well.

  3. MelanieJoy says:

    I usually prefer not, but as time slips by there is less and less of a chance it will work. Will Poulter is an excellent actor, but I never liked him in the role of Eustace anyways, so that recast would be ok with me. I believe the rest can still fit into their roles for any future movies. Either way, let's get this rolling! 😀

  4. FilmReel says:

    I hope the director is announced before the next podcast.

  5. Aslan Return says:

    I think , that Will Poulter should be return as Eustace in "Silver Chair" His job was amazing! I don't know, who could replace him. I know that Will is 24 years old now, but I think, that could be return.

  6. This is all Walt Disney's and Walden Media's fault, if Walt Disney had been more involved in the making of the first two movies, or especially Prince Caspian, then this wouldn't be happening. Also if they had done this in the chronological order of the stories of the books as C.S. Lewis intended to be read starting with Magician's Nephew, then we won't be in this mess. However, putting that aside. At the time these movies first came out I was one to hold on to nostalgia, while thats changed a little in me, in my opinion given the length of time that's passed since the last movie, from a movie perspective, why people would not want these actors to come back, well just seems very contradictory. I really liked all the Original actors and actresses. I also agree that Horse and His Boy really should be next, if its left for last it might be counterproductive to make it by the time they get around to it. I really don't think they should recast all of the characters, if William Moseley says he wants to come back, then TriStar, C.S. Lewis Estate, and the Mark Gordon Company should honor William Moseley. Now whether the other actors will come back, I also want to hear and see a statement from them. At this point it makes sense to wrap up the Pevensies story with Horse and His Boy and The Last Battle. We can do Silver Chair and The Magician's Nephew later. I say let the Original Cast come back if they want to and please don't recast and reboot this movie, lets just pick up where we left off in Dawn Treader and let the Chronicles of Narnia finish its remaining books to be adapted into movies, and wrap it up and call it a day.

  7. narnia fan 7 says:

    Great podcast guys! I like the new title, Glad we're going to be getting one every couple weeks now.

    With recasting, in general I don't have a problem with it, unless it replacing an actor I thought was great the that particular role. In this case with the Pevensie actors I would like it if the came back but I don't think I would be disappointed if they don't.

    As for which one should be made after Silver Chair, I see Glumpuddle's point about Horse and His Boy being potential an odd follow-up to SC. but I think it could work fine if they approach it strictly a marketing sense kind of like Rouge One, a for the most part stand alone story within a series and featuring charicturs from previous film in minor roles.

    • FilmReel says:

      I like your idea for Horse and His Boy by doing it kind of like Rogue One, I didn't really like Rogue One but I could see a really good version of that and a really bad one so it's just up to how they execute it.

      • narnia fan 7 says:

        I don't like Rouge One either and it may not the best comparison sense Star Wars is probably the most popular film series ever. But I think on paper the way Rouge One was marketed could be a good way to market Horse and His Boy.

  8. The Rose-Tree Dryad says:

    I love the new podcast, guys! Talking Beasts is such a good name. (And for someone like me who loves to take a podcast with her on a stroll, it's Walking and Talking Beasts. :P)

    I personally don't mind recasting if it results in a better performance… I genuinely adore some of the portrayals in the films, but I never imagine the actors from the movies when I read the books, so it's easy for me to picture new people in the roles. I wasn't really bothered by the suggestion that we were getting a total reboot for this reason. However, a lot of people completely disagree with me and were so excited when they saw Will Moseley talk about returning to Narnia. I would expect that the filmmakers would be keen on pleasing these fans because they can do a lot to help promote the film. (That said, I'll be extremely surprised if they bring Will Poulter back for SC.)

    The order of the films is a really tough question because there is no obvious answer. I'd kind of like MN –> HHB –> then LB because it shows the beginning of Narnia, the Golden Age, and the end of Narnia. I definitely don't think it would be a good idea for LB to be anything other than the last movie, because it's going to be a very difficult story to adapt to film. While it may be a success with fans, I'm not sure it will be broadly popular with audiences, and the last thing that the Narnia franchise needs is a commercial flop that will impede adapting MN and HHB into film. So definitely go with MN and HHB before LB, but I am fairly ambivalent on which of those two films should come first. As Mel and Dot were saying, those stories are both very well-suited for the silver screen and they have a great chance of succeeding from a business perspective. (Hmm, from a financial standpoint, maybe they should go with HHB next since it's bound to be popular with horse people….)

    I love the addition of the trivia question segment! Trying to play along was very fun. XD Valiant effort, Mel! *applauds* I think I might have got it right phonetically, but I was spelling it wrong in my head: Bree-hee-hinny-brinny-hoohy-hah. (It's written Breehy-hinny-brinny-hoohy-hah in the book, but horses don't write anyway, so… hmm. :P)

  9. Digory9 says:

    I doubt the fate of an entire film relies on an actor's age especially if it's only a 10 age difference. I think it's up to William Mosley and the filmmakers.

  10. Digory9 says:

    Storytelling logistics play a big part into casting actors. Eustace and Jill are clearly kids in boarding school, so there's no way they can be over 15. I don't think Will Poulter himself would feel comfortable playing the part.

    Caspian on the other hand wasn't stuck to a certain phase of his life, though C.S Lewis refers to him as a 'boy'. So I guess that's why the actor could be mid 20s.
    I really hope they find some talented kids to play Eustace and Jill. Nevertheless, I don't want all the remaining main characters to be children. I'd like to see some teenagers/mid twenties. That kinda shows that Narnia isn't a place for kids, but adults and young adults too.

  11. The Rose-Tree Dryad says:

    Oh, and I forgot to mention that I like the music at the beginning! It sounds full of good magic. 😀

  12. Lily says:

    Wish I could be part of you guys! Love the music and discussion.

  13. Gandalf the Grey says:

    All necessities must be done, even a 'recast'.

    But let us remind the team what is most important: weak points of past narnia films and suggestions for future ones.

    • Anfinwen says:

      Good point. Recasting is the least of our worries. Even with the actors we didn't care for, the cast wasn't one of the real weak points. Whatever it takes to make a good adaption, that's what they need to do.

    • Gandalf the Grey says:


  14. Trufflehunter says:

    Although I believe C.S Lewis wouldn't approve of telling someone they're too old for Narnia.
    Will Poulter seems a bit old for the part. There's no way he can be a child in school. It would look funny.
    ..Unless Jill and Eustace are in high school, but I don't see that change relevant to the story.

    William Mosley should come back. Peter doesn't have any major storylines left, I'm sure he'll be just fine. Plus he wants to come back!

    Do you guys think that most of the actors themselves would want to come back?

  15. Sirius317 says:

    I guess that would be a good idea to try to make say "prequel dilogy" simultaneously, containing HHB and MN though I'm aware of the impossibility of such a twist. I mean, whoever is cast as Eustace, a problem of aging will definitely arise as waiting for two other chapters to be filmed will take years. Worst case scenario is omitting the prequels at all or producing them years after.

    • imaginatvytitle says:

      I believe Jill and Eustace are supposed to be 9 in SC and 16 in LB. That's a lot of growing up for them between those two books, so I don't think it would be a problem making MN and HHB before LB. I highly doubt the studio will cast 9-year-old actors, but even if they're 12-year-olds who look 10 in SC and 19-year-olds who look 17 in LB, that's a comfortable 7-year window in which to make the remaining three films, LB being last. I don't think it would be a problem unless they cast kids that are way too old in SC.

  16. Sirius317 says:

    What really bothers me is the absence of a good cross-platform video game tied to the third movie. The mobile gaming is not a great deal of fun I guess and I hate this contemporary tendency.
    My great dream is that CS Lewis Company partners with TT Games to make a sort of "Pevensie trilogy" Lego Narnia video game that would follow the patters of Lego HP or Lego Pirates you know.

  17. imaginatvytitle says:

    I just hope they don't recast James McAvoy! I really enjoyed his performance as Tumnus and I'd love to see him return in HHB and LB! I just hope he'd be up for reprising the role. I think he would be.

  18. Yerdif says:

    Who would you guys like as composer for the next films? Harry Gregson-Howard definitely needs to do HHB and MN because of those movies' direct connection with LWW, but who for Silver Chair and Last Battle?

  19. Yerdif says:

    OOps. I meant Harry Gregson-Williams. Sorry. But still, who do you think could do them?

  20. Yerdif says:

    I'm not sure, but I'd like to hear James Newton Howard in LB.

  21. imaginatvytitle says:

    While I wouldn't be heartbroken if they recast Peter, I really don't think it's necessary. His role in LB is so minor, it's practically a cameo. And cameos are no fun if the actor has been recast. It was his role originally so if he wants to come back, I say let him! It would be a nice bit of nostalgia for the fans. I guess I'm just a sucker for continuity.

    • Gandalf the Grey says:

      No part of any story is minor. For Peter to close the door when Narnia was perish in LB is no minor role. If the film will not go against time, 'recast' might not be necessary.

  22. Trufflehunter says:

    James Newton Howard's score for the 2003 film adaptation of Peter Pan still gives me the feeling of adventure and escaping reality. I'd love for him to work on the remaining Narnia films.

  23. Trufflehunter says:

    For HHB, since it's less magical than the others and more historical, perhaps the score could be by Trevor Morris who composed the theme for The Tudors. It gives me chills.

  24. Aslan says:

    I'm quite happy that William will take part in films, but I hope others actors will return too or it will be not so cool, because we won't see them together again!(

  25. FilmReel says:

    I think this clip from the new Detroit trailer shows Will Poulter is way, way too old to play Eustace.

    • HPofNARNIA says:

      yeah, he do

      • HPofNARNIA says:

        *yeah, he does not look like a teenager anymore, i thought he did a good job as Eustace, but im with Glumpuddle on this, he's too old and id rather let them find someone else.

  26. That's a great news..hope it all ends well…waiting for the movies ..again there will be magic..with awesome characters especially long Peter..
    Thank you for letting me know about this news..

  27. Thunderfist says:

    I hope Mr. Gregson-Williams will return to handle musical scoring, or at least let the new composer produce new ones based from the first two films' scoring. David Arnold's ones are good, but for me they're too generic for fantasy films. I can't even hum them out.

  28. Pracheta says:

    This is a really good idea.Without the Narnia actors there would be no fun.But how it will happen because in the 1st and 3rd chapters of chronicles of narnia there is no role of Narnia actors. For that some new actors should be appointed.
    Hope for the best direction and acting.

  29. Roger says:

    GlumPuddle, you could solve the problem of the talking horse. Take a look at the old Mister Ed TV show which ran from 1958 to 1966. Mister Ed was a talking horse. It was a special effect that worked at the time. This is a solvable problem that does not require expensive visual effects. Special effects can solve many of the problems in the movies and keep costs down.

  30. ChristianMan17 says:

    I would definitely like William Moseley to come back and play Peter in LB, he did An amazing job in the films, I never thought he might make an appearance in HHB if it does get made into a movie, I don't think William and the others should b in there because it won't fit, and tbh, I would actually like the actors who played the adult Pevensies to come back.