Make your selections in five different categories to assemble your ideal rom-com cast.
Our first category is leading man. The budding candidates are Hugh Dancy, Henry Golding, Idris Elba and Javier Bardem. Dancy wins points simply for being married to Claire Danes. He’s also got proven versatility having appeared in TV shows like Hannibal and Homeland as well as starring alongside Emma Thompson and Mindy Kaling in the 2019 feature film Late Night.
Golding has accrued some hefty rom-com credits. He played Nick Young, the boyfriend of Constance Wu’s Rachel, in 2018’s Crazy Rich Asians. He followed up the following year with a starring turn in Paul Feig’s Christmastime rom-com Last Christmas.
In terms of sheer hunk-factor, it’s a tight tussle between Elba and Bardem. Rom-coms haven’t exactly been their stock in trade, however. Elba was superb as a main cast member in The Wire and has gone on to excel in films like Beasts of No Nation, Bastille Day and Molly’s Game.
Bardem formed part of a thruple with Scarlett Johansson and Penelope Cruz in Woody Allen’s Vicky Cristina Barcelona, but he’s better recognised for his chilling role in the Coens’ No Country For Old Men and as the antagonist Raoul Silva in the 007 flick Skyfall.
As for the leading woman, we’ve got a choice between Katherine Heigl, Taraji P. Henson, Constance Wu and Salma Hayek. While not currently as visible as she was in the first decade of the 21st century, Heigl has rom-com bragging rights courtesy of her lead role in Knocked Up, as well as 27 Dresses and The Ugly Truth.
Henson made a major on-screen impact in the 2005 film Hustle & Flow and later appeared in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. You might also remember her as Detective Arroyo in Date Night, which starred Steve Carell and Tina Fey.
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Wu was widely praised for her performance as Rachel Chu in 2018’s Crazy Rich Asians. She nabbed a Golden Globe nomination for the performance, which saw her starring alongside the aforementioned Henry Golding.
Hayek is perhaps best known for portraying Frida Kahlo in the biopic Frida or starring in Robert Rodriguez’ El Mariachi-sequel Desperado, but she’s no mug when it comes to more lighthearted roles. For instance, she appeared next to Will Smith and Kevin Kline in Wild Wild West and joined Penelope Cruz in the action comedy Bandidas.
Once you’ve chosen your leading roles it’s on to hilarious best friend, male antagonist and female antagonist. Proceed!