We’ve heard of male actors having a say in the casting of the female lead in their films, but this is new even by Hollywood standards. Saoirse Ronan, the 18-year-old lead actor of The Host, was asked by the makers of the film to give her inputs in the selection of the two male lead actors.
The film is based on the book by the same name, written by Stephenie Meyer, best known as the author of the Twilight series. Along with the writer, who has also produced the film and director Andrew Niccol, Ronan took a call on the actor she wanted to be paired with in the film. She attended all the auditions to be able to select someone who was not only a good actor, but was also someone she could share a comfort level and have chemistry with, for romantic scenes.
Eventually, she selected two actors, Max Irons and Jake Abel, to play the roles of the characters, Jared and Ian respectively. Ronan had previously interacted with both and was confident that they were suitable for their parts.
When asked about her sole in the selection, Ronan says, “It was essential that we all work well together. It’s the first time I’ve been part of an on-screen romance and I was lucky enough to do it with two people I love being with. Andrew and I were in London when Max came in. I was delighted because I already knew him.”
It was the same with Jake. Ronan recalls, “We worked together on a film called The Lovely Bones. This is the first time I have enacted romantic scenes in a movie, so already knowing Jake and Max made it a lot more comfortable. At both their auditions, when they left the room, Andrew and I looked at each other and said, ‘It has to be him.”