Saoirse Ronan


  1. Evanna Lynch, Harry Potter and The Order of The Phoenix, 2007.    Lynch  had written to  JK Rowling, proposing her services.  The suits never know this when falling for  her audition.  “She is Luna!” cried producer David Barron, choosing her from some 29 others  (the Potterverse Publicity Dept said 150,000…!!!) (including Ronan, Scarlett Byrne, Juno Temple.  Byrne was called back to be  Pansy Parkinson for The Half-Blood Prince and the two-part Deathly Hallows big finish – the Londoner then wed Cooper Hefner, son of the Playboy creator, Hugh M Hefner, and is now credited as Scarlett Hefner.   The Irish Evanna  made her movie debut as Luna Lovegood – continuing in the rest of the series.
  2. Cate Blanchett, Robin Hood, 2009.     The girl wonder from County Carlow says it’s: Sair-sha… Before the Sherwood project reached Sir Ridley Scott, the Atonement Oscar nominee was the maid, er widow Marion (sic). She  then preferred Aussie director Peter Weir’s The Way Back with Colin Farrell.  The new candidates were:  Emily Blunt, Zooey Deschanel, Scarlette Johansson, Angelina Jolie, Natalie Portman Sienna Miller won – and then she quit, as well… and a whole new search began… among Blanchett, Rachel Weisz and Kate Winslet.  Director Ridley Scott said the only good Sherwood movie was made by… Mel Brooks!   (Ronan and Blanchett later co-starred in Hanna, 2010).
  3. Kristen Stewart, Snow White and the Huntsman, 2011.    Saoirse (she’s OK with Sear-sha) and LilyCollins were the only actresses seen for the two rebooted Ms Whites of that year… Here she succumbed to Stewart’s Twilight clout. That was fine, people advised her not to move too quickly. “I don’t have to be constantly working. That’s not why I do it.I could do three films a year but I’d just be absolutely wrecked at the end of it.”
  4. Lily Collins, Mirror Mirror, 2011.    She almost landed Snow White until director Tarsem Singh felt the age difference between her (17) and prince Armie Hammer (25) “was too big.”Not to mention, he was too tall! Lily  is the daughter of rock singer-drummer Phil Collins. Again it was OK. “It’s important to get home to Ireland to spend time with peoople who haven’t got anything to do with the filmbusiness.”
  5. Alicia Vikander, Anna Karenina, 2011.    Her agent advised against the support role as it could preventher taking better offers. Sure enough, during the shoot, Saoirse knocked off leads in Byzantium and The Host.
  6. Dakota Fanning, Effie, 2011     Both Saoirse (shedislikes Sair-Sha) and Carey Mulligan had been attached to the titular Euphemic Gray- teenage bride of the Victorian art critic John Ruskin (played by Greg Wise, husband of the writer and co-star Emma Thompson). Dakota had also been among Ronan’s rivals for Snow White.
  7. Shailene Woodley, The Spectacular Now, 2012.     The Bronx marvel was first to be offered Aimee – which, finally, fortunately, changed Woodley’s mind about quitting acting as nothing good, never mind exceptional, had come her way since The Descendants in 2010. Ironically, her co-star Brie Larson was going the same agonising thought process. They were both regarded as the new Jennifer Lawrence. JLaw and BLar have an Oscar each, Woodley’s cannot be far away. In, alas, one of his final reviews, Roger Ebert was praised the girls “who look, speak and feel like real 18-year-old middle-American human beings. Do you have any idea how rare that is.”
  8. Emma Watson, Noah, 2013.    Bella Heathcoite impressed with her audition but Dakota Fanny was the (impossibly fully booked) first choice of auteur Darren Aronofsky for the daughter of his life-long fascination with “a dark, complicated character who experiences real survivor’s guilt.”And a lot of water.  Enter: Emma from, one best-selling book to another.
  9. Amy Adams, Man of Steel, 2013.
  10. Kate Mara, Fantastic Four, 2014.      For the Marvel reboot,  second-time director Josh Trank mused over Ronan, Sasha Pieterse, Margot Robbie, Emmy Rossum, Samira Wiley and director Josh Trank’s favourite: Allison Williams. for Susan Storm, better known as The Invisible Woman. Or, indeed, now better known as Mara.  They were all lucky to escape   what Hollywood Reporter critic Todd McCarthy called “a 100-minute trailer for a movie that never happens.”

  11. Lily James, Cinderella, 2014.   On the pumpkin list for Disney’s live-action version were Ronan, Bella Heathcote, Imogen Poots, Margot Robbie, Amanda Seyfried, Alicia Vikander, Gabrielle Wilde. (Amanda Seyfried’s previous role obviously counted against her at Disney – Linda Lovelace!). And the slipper went to… Lily James, Downton Abbeys bright young Lady Rose. She went on to be Natasha Rostova in the BBC’s 2016 War and Peace. And Juliet opposite her Prince Charming, Richard Madden, as Romeo.
  12. Elizabeth Olsen, The Avengers: Age of Ultron, 2014.   Lindsay Lohan and Sasha Pieterse were also for Wanda Maximoff, aka Scarlet Witch, in the second Avengers summit meeting. . Saoirse perfected   her US accent by watching Seinfeld.
  13. Alicia Vikander,  Testament of Youth, 2014.   Ronan dropped Vera Brittain’s early autobigraphy, losing all her men friends to The Great War – as the hectic Ronan career took on a geographical stance with Stockholm, Pennsylvania and Brooklyn. And so, Britain went to a (gorgeous) Swede.
  14. Allison Sudol, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. 2015. Established actresses Ronan, Dakota Fanninng, Lili Simmons and Kristen Stewart were short-listed for the bombshell Queenie, eventual sister-in-law of JK Rowling’s new hero, wizard-magizoologist Newton Artemis Fido ‘Newt’ Scamanderin the first of a trilogy (in five parts.. and 54 years before Harry Potter was born). An alternative singer-songwriter (with the band, A Fine Frenzy),author and actres, Sudol was won over by the way casting agent Fiona Weir talked about Queenie: incredibly empathetic, kind; seen as a beauty, but that ‘s not how she sees herself ; very feminine, incredibly perceptive and lovely. “Then she said that she was a witch and I didn’t know what was happening!
  15. Clara  Delevingne, Suicide Squad, 2015. After 19 possible Deadshots and 15 Harley Quinns, director David Ayer searched through 11 young beauties for the DCV villain  June Moone, aka Enchantress. The contenders were Troian Bellisario (tied to Pretty Little Liars), Emilia Clarke (nothing without her Game of Thrones’ dragons), Alexandra Daddario, Megan Fox, Brie Larson, Ellen Page, Krysten Ritter, Saoirse Ronan, Emma Stone, Alicia Vikander, Shailene Woodley. And he told the winning Delevingne to prepare for the role by stripping naked in the woods and walk in mud, preferably during a full moon.  Takes all sorts. Film still flopped!
  16. Alicia Vikander, Tomb Raider, 2017.    Lara Croft is the girls’ James Bond.  Many tried to succeed Angelina Jolie  from her 2000 version – she won it from  20 candidates.  Two dozen lost to the Swedish Vikander, on a roll with her 2016 Danish Girl Oscar and Ex Machinarobot…The Franchise Brigade was represented by two from the Percy Jackson flicks (Alexandra Daddario, Rosario Dawson), two Terminators (Emilia Clarke, Summer Glau), two Underworlders (Kate Beckinsale, Rhona Mitra) and three Twilighters (Ashley Greene, Nikki Reed and Kristen Stewart who simply refused). Plus 007’s Gemma Arterton, Harry Potter’s Emma Watson, Marvel’s Wanda Maximioff (Elizabeth Olsen), Star Wars’Daisy Ridley, Transformers’ Megan Fox, TRON’s Olivia Wilde, X Men’s Jennifer Lawrence,  Other also-rans were: Jessica Biel (as perfect as Dawson), Emily Blunt, Emily Browning, Cara Delevingne (Vikander’s co-star in Tulip Fever, 2017), Nina Dobrev, Anne Hathaway, Sienna Miller (too mild, surely), Saoirse Ronan and Moon’s Kaya Scodelario.
  17. Sophie Turner, X-Men: Apocalypse, 2015. “A big monster of a movie,” declared propducer-director Bryan Singer. “A kinda conclusion of six X-Men films, yet a potential rebirth of younger, newer characters.” To succeed Famke Janssen’s Jean Grey, a mutant scared of her super-abilities, Singer mused over Lily Collins,Elle Fanning, Chloë Grace Mortez, Sasha Pieterse, Hallee Steinfeld and Hollywood’s hottest newcomers:  Star Wars find Daisy Ridley, The Wolf of Wall Street’s Margot Robbie and fthe most experienced Saoirse Ronan- Oscar-nominated for Atonement,  200. Yet Singer voted Turner, because of how she handled the dark side of her Game of Thrones character, Sansa Star… and despite having blue eyes to  Janssen’s dark brown.  
  18. Florence Pugh, Black Widow, 2019.  Scarlett Johansson was the titular Natsha Romanoff, of course. But there was a battle for Yelena Belova between the favourites, Saoirse Ronan, and Emma Watson. Plus newer-comers Australian Alice Englert (from Jane Campionl’s Top of the Lake serries) and the Israeli actress and model Dar Zuzovsky. The win for Oxford’s Pugh came at the end of a magical two years in films and TV: Lady Macbeth, King Lear, The Little Drummer Girl, Midsommer and Amy in Little Women.



 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  18