Choosing A Heartbreaker For If I Stay

by sarahenni on January 25, 2013

It has been quite a long time since I had a good old-fashioned casting post at this here blog, and that is certainly not for lack of exciting happenings. But Gayle Forman’s announcement about the If I Stay movie yesterday unleashed a floodgate of feels, so Imma break it down.

The If I Stay movie has been floating around with Summit for a while, briefly with the flawless Dakota Fanning attached. Though I’m sad Dakota’s Mia will never come to be, I gotta say that I think Chloe Moretz is a truly fantastic choice.

And with Mia cast so impeccably, cue my heart attack over who will be bringing punk-rock boyfriend Adam to life. It’s a big deal to me personally, because the Adam from the book is a heart-wringing amalgamation of every dude I dated in high school (the dramz!). And a big deal for the franchise because, if the film version of If I Stay manages to capture the dagger-to-the-heart beauty of the book, I’ll be standing in line like an insomniac Twilight fan at Comic Con for a film of Where She Went to be green-lit. Does anything sound better right now than a YA version of Before Sunrise on the streets of New York? Absolutely freaking not.

I turned to Jessica BS, Casting Correspondent for this here blog, for a comprehensive breakdown of what Adam needs to be, and who might be perfect for the role.

Since Jessica and I were kinda-sorta the exact same person(ish) in high school, we quickly realized we had both envisioned the same person while reading about Adam in both If I Stay and Where She Went. My indie cred is going to take a serious hit here, but the visual we agreed was perfect for Adam is based on Chris Carrabba, of Dashboard Confessional and Further Seems Forever. 1

You can’t out-emo this guy. Don’t even consider trying.

So that’s where we began our search. We also agreed that Adam shouldn’t look too very young, and we told ourselves that was not just to keep us from max creepage when we inevitably salivate over the movie poster. Plus: whoever plays Adam needs to have chops. This role had better include some concert footage of fledgling Shooting Star, and there should be a Joaquin Phoenix-in-Walk-The-Line vibe, no cheesy lip-syncing allowed.

With that, here are some standout candidates!

Darren Criss

Wait, did I mention something earlier about indie cred? Well screw that. Darren Criss has been the only thing giving Glee oxygen for ages, and it’s obvious from his role there that dude can crush a vocal solo. And this role would give Darren the chance to step out of tailored Warbler suit jackets and Hogwarts school uniforms—grow the hair out, find some ratty old slouchy hat, and maybe add a fake tattoo here and there and you’d have a perfect Portland punk. Yeah, pretty into that choice, at least from a visual standpoint (ahem).

Freddie Stroma (a.k.a. Cormac McLaggen)

Yeah, he’s good.

Christopher Abbott

Currently playing spineless pushover Charlie in Girls, I think Chris Abbott would be fairly easy to age down (without any scruff he could definitely pass for a high school senior in Movieland). And we already know from Girls that he can play guitar and sing, so he’d have the talent portion locked down. Best of all, he’s handled the navel-gazing angst of Girls with charm and a slight undertone of kicked puppy, which, let’s face it, is kind of essential to Adam. RESISTING SPOILERY TALK.

Zach Gilford

Gayle Forman herself mentioned this familiar face, and UGH. It hurts so bad to have to admit that he’s WAY too old to be Adam. Even though he has a babyface and could (still) be aged down quite a bit, I think we’ve seen Friday Night Lights take all his “plausibly playing a high-schooler” years. (Not that I regret a single minute of FNL. I DO NOT.) Sigh. Too bad, because as Matt Saracen this guy broke my heart a thousand times, which is an essential prerequisite for every role inĀ If I Stay, but especially Adam. I don’t even care if he can carry a tune. TEXAS FOREVER, SEVEN.

I am so dating myself guys. I just couldn’t get with any of the other actual-YA-aged go-tos (the guys from Perks aren’t quite right, Alex Pettyfer has been evicted from nearly every YA heart, Ron Weasley is too British). So what do you think?? Who is up to the task of ripping our hearts into the tiniest bits?

  1. This led to an entire side conversation about how holy hell did you hear Further Seems Forever is touring?! And did anyone honestly feel the need to listen to anything besides The Moon Is Down, most specifically “Snowbirds and Townies“?

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Jaime January 25, 2013 at 4:17 pm

First of all, let me just say that Freddie Stroma is totally hot. Post-HP Freddie (a la PITCH PERFECT) is definitely a good contender. (He’s actually the inspiration for one of my characters in my sci-fi WIP.) But I really like Christopher Abbott too. I totally forgot that he was a musician. There are some great suggestions here. :)

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Krispy January 25, 2013 at 5:45 pm

I just have to cosign Jaime that Freddie Stroma in Pitch Perfect is reeeaaaally attractive, haha. You already know my submission to this shortlist, the also-Glee-alum Jonathan Groff because he is nice to look at and totally kills on vocals.

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Sarah G. January 27, 2013 at 12:44 pm

When I saw you tweet about this conversation, I really hoped it would turn into a blog post. Yes to the above declarations of Freddie Stroma’s hotness. Not sure I have any other suggestions … does (ag what’s his name? …) Aaron Johnson being married and having children with a 40-year-old eliminate his chances? Didn’t really have the sexy thing going on in Kick-Ass, but he was good as young John Lennon in Nowhere Boy.

And LOLOL Further Seems Forever tour! Remember when we were all like, “Dude, I listened to Dashboard Confessional before they were big. Before they were even called that,” *hipster-look-of-disdain*? Embarrassing period of my life, that’s for sure.

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JG May 8, 2013 at 2:15 am

All the actors look too old to play the part of Adam. Maybe Alex from All Time Low or Jesse Rutherford from The Neighbourhood

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