So we’ve been sorting and sifting, mulling and musing and scratching our heads since the Rebel Prince competition closed on July 22nd. It has not been easy. As you can tell from the previous posts, we’ve had one hell of a strong batch of submissions to choose from (and several late entries broke our hearts - we’re sorry your photos didn’t make it up onto the collage wall, folks! But thank you for taking the time to participate!)
I’m so grateful to my publishers at Orbit, The O’Brien Press and Allen and Unwin for agreeing to give three copies of each book, because I certainly could not have chosen only one winner out of the two hundred and twenty three photos submitted!
When you read the winners e-mails ( which I’ll show below in full) I think you’ll agree that they really stand out from the crowd, but for the record, these are our main reasons for choosing the winners
a/ all three worked very hard to find photographs that accurately reflected the characters as they are portrayed in the books.
b/ all three took the time to write a short note about why they’d chosen thier particular photos/actors
c/ they took the time to cast all three characters!
Without further faffing about, the winners are…
Samantha won the prize for her unique choice of Gaspard Ulliel as Christopher, but here are all her fantastic choices .
Wesley Jonathon as Razi
(SAM) Wesley Jonathan for Razi.
(ME: I liked Sam’s photo of Wesley Jonathon because, though Wesley has more African features than Razi would, he has this fantastic expression here which I think really capture Razi’s personality.)
Rachel Hurd-Wood as Wynter
SAM: Rachel Hurd-Wood for Wynter. She has those beautiful red curls and been in many period pieces. It was so hard to choose among the many pictures of her!
ME: I very much liked the photo Sam chose of Rachal Hurd-wood as Wynter, it reminds me of the scene where Wynter wakes to see the raven leaving bloody track marks on her window sill.
Gaspard Ulliel as Christopher Garron
SAM: Then Gaspard Ulliel for Chris, only Gaspard’s hair needs to be longer. I like the angular shape of his face, I imagine Chris to be like that.
ME: This photo reminds me of the many times in Lorcan’s room when Christopher is lounging about drinking tea and playing chess - I could not get over how physically alike Chris Gaspard Ulliel is. Knowing what a wonderful actor Gaspard is - and how capable of showing vulnerability as well as a dangerous hard-edged coldness - well, he’s just the perfect choice. I wonder can he speak English?
The next winner is:
Helen is 13. I’ll let her wonderful notes speak for themselves, but I’ll just tell you that Helen won for her choice of Adrien Grenier as Razi Kingsson. Yes I agree, Helen, this photo does remind me of the scene where Razi is sitting in the Marni’s kitchen. Thank you so much for researching Adrien’s background to see if he qualified as a man of colour and for taking the time to change his eye colour to brown. There were many many great choices of actor for Razi* but to be honest, this is the only one which really gave me any sense of time or place and, though too light skinned, was the one which most closely physically resembled Razi as he is described in the books . This, more than anything else, is why it won.
Here are all Helen’s wonderful choices and the indepth, thoughtful notes which made her submission stand out.
Logan Lerman as Christopher
For me this was the hardest one to find because I had a very solid image of him in my head. First I tried to find a teen actor with long hair on Google Images but that just resulted in millions of piccies Taylor Lautner (from Twilight), who unforch has quite dark skin which wouldn’t really fit the part of Christopher. I eventually resigned to trying to find a Christopher with short hair as the chances of finding a teen actor with long hair were very slim. I considered actors such as Cameron Bright and Chase Crawford but none of them were quite right in my opinion. But one day I went to see ‘Percy Jackson and the Lightening Theif’ in the cinema and when I saw Logan Lerman with his pale completion and dark hair I thought ”This is as close as I’m going to get!” So that’s how that choice came about. Sorry about the size of the picture (The one with the horses) but I thought it kind of reminded me of him travelling with the Loups-Garous but it didn’t have a close enough image of his face so I added the other one too, to give you an idea of what he looks like up close.
Bonnie Wright as Wynter
Actresses with red hair are hard to come by, which is a shame because its such a unique and beautiful colour. The first actress which sprung to mind was Bonnie Wright from the Harry Potter films. It was hard trying to find a pic of her that looked authentically medieval because of her usual girly glamour (which so isn’t Wynter!) The image I have chosen shows amazing intensity in her eyes and the black backround really highlights her firey hair.
Adrian Grenier as Razi
Adrian Grenier is the actor who I have chosen. I first saw him act in ‘The Devil wears Prada’ (which is where the pic with him wearing a brown/green jumper came from). I really think this could be a still of him in Marni’s kitchen sitting at the table. You stated that you would rather a man of color play the part so that made me rethink the choice. I returned to the trusty Google Images to discover a few pictures of Adrian with a darker skin tone, I then checked him up on wiki to discover he was from an Apache backround (a group of Native Americans) which would explain his rich completion. I know he is not as dark as maybe you would like but for me it’s his crazy curly hair that makes him so Razi!! I also edited the color of his eyes in the picture of him with darker skin from blue to dark brown (if he was to act the part he could always wear contacts!)
The next winner is
I loved all of Kate’s choices ( I do love the idea of Sendhil for Razi, and everyone knows my love of Ben WHhishaw.) But it is Kate’s choice of photo for Wynter that won her the prize. Kate was one of the few folks that found an action photo for Wynter, when you ad that to the fact that she is astride a galloping horse ( yes Kate, very Crowded Shadows) and with her red hair streaming in the wind then, come on, how could we resist? WINNER!
en Whishaw as Christopher
KATE: I chose Ben Whishaw as Christopher. He has a perfect face shape and angular eyes much like chris, unfortunetly he does not have the long hair. But I think he is good as he can give the tortured yet playful depth that Christopher has. (And his skin is a lot lighter normally, but I think these expressions are the best)
Sendhil Rammamurty as Razi
KATE: I have always had Sendhil Ramamurthy image in my head for Razi. He older than Razi, but with his dark skin, curly hair and dark eyes he fitted Razi’s description perfectly, also Razi is more mature in my opinion and always looked older than he was.
Rachal Hurd-Wood as Wynter
KATE : I chose Rachel Hurd-Wood, because she has the piercing eyes and stare that I always imagine for Wynter (especially when she has her court face on). I have attached some pictures of her in boys clothes and on a horse from the movie Perfume which reminded me greatly of the first section of Crowded Shadows.
So, that is the three winners! I a very happy with the choices, I hope you are too.
There is however, just one last prize
Charlie Cox as Christopher
Christopher smiles a lot in the books, a lot. But very few of the photos actually showed him doing so! This is why Caitlin Meindl, deserves an honourable mention for her choice of a smiling Charlie Cox as Christopher. Caitlin, your’s was one of the few photos of Christopher that I felt captured his smile. Though you haven’t won an advance copy of The Rebel Prince, I will be posting you a signed first edition as soon as the book is out on the shelves in October. Hope that’s ok
Samantha, Helen, Kate and Helen, can you e-mail me with your adresses? I’ll be away for all of next week giving a graphic novel course in Bantry - but as soon as I get home I’ll mail you out your books.
many thanks to all who participated I had a ball, hope you did too!
* Sendil Ramamurty was a personal favourite - and I loved Tegan’s photo of Dev Patel striding purposefully towards the camera. Yes Tegan it did very much remind me of Razi’s ‘mask’