Paris Hilton (“Cristabel”) was the natural choice to play the “Hottie.” Besides her well-known catch phrase, “That’s hot,” Paris is someone who is inherently judged in the media on her appearance. Everyone has assumptions about what she is really like. This is the same mistake Nate makes with Cristabel in the film. The challenge was in trying to find a “Nate” and a “June” to fill out the cast.
We auditioned many talented actors and actresses for the roles, but when Joel David Moore came in, we knew we had our Nate. He has the air of the “Everyman” about him, which makes audiences want to root for him to get the girl. Joel’s combination of wit, determination and charm was perfect for the role.
When it came time to find our “Nottie,” we auditioned many beautiful and talented actresses, but Christine Lakin stood out when she gave June a tomboyish vulnerability that impressed the casting directors as well as the director. The hardest part in casting Christine for the role was making her look ugly. Make-up artist Randy Westgate and hairstylist Dugg Kirkpatrick transformed Christine into the “Nottie” by creating prosthetic teeth, mole and hairpiece. Shapely legs became hairy and an infected toenail was too real for many members of the cast and crew to look at without having a physical response.
For the role of “the male Cristabel,” we had to find someone who could be threatening to Nate while still being the ideal “perfect guy” for women. No muscle-bound jock would do. The character’s name was originally “Brad,” but when we met Johann Urb, it was hard to know where the line would be drawn between the character and actor. The director thought it would be appropriate to rename the character after Johann. Johann even wrote his own song in the movie. Originally, the song to be sung in the coffee shop was “Wildfire,” perhaps too dated for our audience. So, when Johann invited us to hear his song, we realized “Someday” was the right song to watch the budding relationship between June and Johann.