Unacceptable: Why I, a 19-Year-Old Man, Should Have Been Cast As Annabeth Chase, a 12-Year-Old Girl
When I first heard the news that a Percy Jackson series was coming to Disney+, I was ecstatic. Finally, a chance for one of my favorite childhood stories to be explored further. And who better to explore it than me? Yes, I may be the wrong age, and wrong gender (probably? I’ll get back to you on that one). Yes, I also have what some might call “no actual training or experience with professional acting”. But despite those minor weaknesses, I have the heart to truly embody the character, something I was sure Rick Riordan would prioritize.
For months, I waited by the phone for the call telling me I got the part. I didn’t even bother sending in an audition tape – why would I need one? The choice was obvious. Or at least, so I thought. Earlier today, they made the announcement that Leah Sava Jeffries had been cast as Annabeth. My first reaction was “who?” I asked everyone around me, all of them said that they knew me, while none of them recognized Leah’s name. Clearly, I have the star power to carry the role. But no, Disney decided to hire her instead. What does she even bring to the table? Energy? Acting talent? A love for the series? Actually auditioning for the role through the proper channels? Why should a rising young actress who earned the job by merit be picked over me?
Actors shouldn’t be chosen for their skill, but for their weirdly persistent love for children’s books. So, Rick Riordan, I beg you, rethink your decision. I know that you may be the “author” of this series, who has worked on it for years, but respectfully, I really think that I know more than you about the characters you created. Please, listen to the overwhelming voices of your fans, and cast me as Annabeth Chase. Until I get a full apology for this callous insult, I'll be waiting in my trailer. (I'll also be waiting for you to give me a trailer so that I can wait in it).
Written by Matt Shinnick.