New Girl is on pause right now - after the first 4 Seasons of the show aired practically back-to-back, New Girl season 5 has been delayed by actress/producer Zooey Deschanel's pregnancy. The show will be back in 2016 (at some point), but as Deschanel is going to take some time-out to take care of her baby, Megan Fox will step up to help lead the show in Season 5. This casting came as a shock to many fans, as Fox's roles have been mainly in action movies so far. So has she got the comedic chops to replace Zooey Deschanel?
Casting Sparks Criticism
This seems to be an extreme reaction, and it doesn't seem as though Fox will be a replacement for Jessica Day. Fox's character has been described as "a straight shooting pharmaceutical rep", who is renting Jessica's room for a few months. It'll be interesting to see Megan Fox play a deadpan and bitingly witty character, and personally I can't wait to see the interaction between her and the other characters!
The question really comes down to - is Megan Fox funny? Showrunner Elizabeth Merriweather certainly seems to think so.
"It's insane to me that such a gorgeous person can be so funny, but I guess we just all have to accept it. I've been a fan of her comedic skills since This is 40, and I'm so excited to have her on the show."
She makes a good point: Megan Fox appeared in the comedy film This Is 40, and actually has years of sitcom experience under her belt after her recurring role in Hope And Faith. More recently, Fox took part in a sketch in Saturday Night Live, and her comedic timing is excellent! Check it out...
Yup, Megan Fox is funny! Although she's only appearing in the first half of New Girl Season 5, there's no doubt that Fox will make an excellent addition to the cast. And who knows, maybe she'll even stay on once Deschanel returns!
Of course, replacing actors in TV shows is pretty standard fair in the entertainment world. There was a similar situation in Cheers when Shelly Long left the show to be replaced by Kirstie Alley. Alley's character (Rebecca) filled in the gap left by Long's, but thanks to their characters' differing personalities, both actresses worked very well within the show's dynamic. With any luck, this is what will happen on New Girl.
But sometimes, replacing actors isn't quite so obvious!
Did You Know These Actors Were Replaced?
Daario Naharis ('Game of Thrones')
The showrunners clearly didn't even try and get Michiel Huisman to look like the previous Daario Naharis (Ed Skrein). And yet, many fans didn't notice the switch.
Ann Veal ('Arrested Development')
George Michael's girlfriend Ann was played by Mae Whitman for the majority of the show, but was originally portrayed by Alexandra Torresanni at the end of Season 1.
Jennifer ('Back To The Future')
After the first Back To The Future movie was released, actress Claudia Wells dropped out of filming the rest of the trilogy to take care of her mother, who had just been diagnosed with cancer. The last scene of the first Back To The Future was re-shot with Elisabeth Shue as Jennifer, so that the second film would have good continuity. Can you spot which film this scene comes from?
So there you have it folks! Actor replacement is more common than you might think. But with her comedy acting prowess, there's no doubt that Megan Fox will be a great fill-in for Zooey Deschanel.