There’s nothing worse than binge-watching a series, when suddenly one of your favorite stars is replaced by an actor you don’t recognize. Casting directors may have thought we wouldn’t notice but these fails were just too much of a disaster to miss.
Everyone loved the show Roseanne but the sitcom made a bit of a blunder when they recast one of the show’s most recognizable faces. Actress Lecy Goranson was cast as Roseanne’s cheeky eldest daughter Becky in the show. She would play the role for five seasons before being replaced by Sarah Chalke. We definitely caught this one.
A Surprise Switch
Beware! this one might be a bit of a spoiler. CBS’s popular show Kevin Can Wait received lots of public criticism after surprisingly killing off Kevin’s onscreen wife Erin Hayes. Fans loved the characters who was then suddenly replaced by Leah Remini. Although the couple had great chemistry, it was still widely considered a casting fail.
A Different Voice
How I Met Your Mother may have been one of TV’s most loved sitcoms but the show left audiences more than a little confused with this casting glitch. In a weird move, the narrator portions of the show made use of Bob Saget’s voice, not the actor who played Ted Mosby. As far as we know, fully grown adults don’t experience a voice change later in life. Interesting move, huh?
Family guy is a worldwide hit. The animated show has some dedicated fans from around the globe. That’s why it was no surprise that when the voice of the character Meg changed, people noticed. The character of the Griffin’s most annoying child was not always voiced by Mila Kunis. Meg had previously been voiced by Lacey Chabert. We’re not entirely sure what prompted the switch up.
The OC Switch Up
In the very first episode of the OC, audiences were introduced to Ryan Atwood’s troubled brother Trey. The role was initially played by Bradley Stryker. The dashing brunette who taught his younger brother to steal cars and rock a wifebeater. After a year in jail, the character emerged as an entirely different person. Literally. Logan Marshall-Green replaced the actor. This was not exactly a subtle move since the actors look nothing alike.
A Modern Mash Up
Let’s get real, babies are kind of boring. Modern Family featured one of the most deadpan babies around. Lily Pritchett-Tucker was originally played by a set of baby twins; Jaden and Ella Hiller. Although the little girls were adorable, we’re pretty sure that neither of them so much as smiled during their run on the show. Aubrey Anderson-Emmons replaced the babies in an interesting move. Lily seemingly aged super rapidly, but at least she could now deliver a one-liner.
Into Thin Air
On the first two seasons of Boy Meets World, Morgan, played by Lily Ricksay, was Cory and Eric’s adorable little sister. At the start of season three, Morgan suddenly goes MIA without any explanation. We’re not quite sure what caused the disappearance but the character returned after a couple of episodes looking a lot more mature.
The Two Aunt Vivs
The nineties would not have been the same without The Fresh Prince of Bel Air. Actress, Janet Hubert-Whitten was suddenly replaced by Daphne Maxwell Reid in the fourth season of the hit show. The two actresses did not look alike but despite the physical changes the character of Aunt Vivien also seemed to undergo a personality change. She went from being a sassy businesswoman to a soft-spoken housewife. We’re not sure they quite got away with this one.
The Tale of Two Anns
We all loved Arrested Development but this actress switch was widely considered a fail. Ann Paul Veal was the love interest of one of the show’s main character’s George Michael. The role was first played by actress Alessandra Torresani in season one but is then suddenly replaced by actress Mae Whitman fifteen episodes. The switch was noticeable and left many fans scratching their heads.
A Tragic Twist
Actress Lisa Robin Kelly (left) played the role of the mean older sister, Laurie Forman in That ’70’s Show. After five seasons on the show Kelly was asked to leave due to a drinking problem. She was soon replaced by Christina Moore who would play the character until the show ended. Sadly, this would be the first sign of trouble for the actress. After multiple run-ins with the law and stints in rehab, Kelly would pass away in 2015 after going into cardiac arrest while in a rehab facility.
In a strange and inappropriate casting choice, Joseph Fiennes was cast to play the late great Michael Jackson in the TV film Elizabeth, Michael and Marlon. Fiennes was a weird choice given he is a Caucasian actor. Audiences were outraged to hear of the bizarre casting decision. The actor even expressed his own dismay, saying, “I’m a white, middle-class guy from London. I’m as shocked as you might be.” The backlash was so severe that the show would ultimately be canceled.
A Different Darrin
The beloved 1960’s show Bewitched followed the story of a witch marrying an average Joe called Darrin. After playing the character for five full seasons, actor Dick York would leave because of a severe back injury. The character was then played by Dick Sargent. Despite the change, ratings didn’t suffer and the show would continue for another three successful seasons.
A Cuckoo Swap
The hilarious Andy Samberg starred in the BBC series Cuckoo playing the lovable and weird hippie who marries an English girl and is taken home to meet her conservative parents. Audiences fell in love with the character but the laughs were to be short-lived. Samberg left the show after only one season due to schedule conflicts. He was replaced by Taylor Lautner from the Twilight. Needless to say, the switch did not go down well with the audience.
So Long Chrissy
Suzanne Somers played the role of the cute Chrissy Snow in the hit sitcom Three’s Company. The role launched Somers to stardom and was a major hit with audiences. The success hit a snag when Somer’s asked for a pay raise that would put her on par with the show’s male lead. Somers was paid $30,000 an episode while her castmate John Ritter was paid a whopping $150,000 per episode. ABC denied her the raise and she was ultimately let go. The character was replaced not once, but twice and met with dwindling ratings.
A Forgotten Friend
Everybody knows the storyline; the lovable Ross is dumped by his wife Carol. Spoiler: She’s a lesbian. What you might not know is that the role was played by two different actresses. When we are first introduced to Carol, she is played by Anita Barone. The next time she makes it onscreen she is noticeably blonder, actually she’s an entirely different person. She was replaced by actress Jane Sibbett. Apparently, Anita actually asked to leave the show, a move we think she may have later regretted.
Everybody Loves Raymond was filled with so many great characters. One of our favorites was oddball, Peter, Raymond’s wife Amy’s older brother. The role of the brother was originally named Russell and played by Paul Reubens, also known as Pee Wee Herman. In season seven a new brother named Peter, played by Chris Elliott, is introduced in place of Russell’s character. The switch was made with no explanation. It was soon found out that Reubens had been arrested on child pornography charges. The incident didn’t quite fit the show’s family-friendly image. Yikes.
Two and a Half Different Men
Charlie Sheen is a weird guy. After a successful stint playing the leading man in Two and a Half Men the actor was booted off the show after numerous Twitter rants attacking the show’s producers. At the time, he was the highest paid actor on television, earning as much as $2 million per episode. The role was then offered to Ashton Kutcher. Being young to replace Sheen, the actor played the new guy who bought Sheen’s character’s mansion. Despite Kutcher’s best efforts, the show’s ratings took a serious hit.
We Miss You Mark
We absolutely loved Parks and Recreation. The comedy’s leading love interest, Mark Brandanawicz was played by actor Paul Schneider. After two seasons, the character suddenly disappeared, leaving fans – and the actor himself – a little confused. In a 2014 interview, he said, “That experience was very strange for me. You know I signed up for a specific character that was changed in mid-season. And it became a character with a lot less to do. And, all of a sudden, I was kind of confused and kind of having a lot less to do.”
So Many Bobbies
Mad Men’s Don Draper’s son Bobby was played by not one, not two, not three, but four different actors? To be fair, Bobby was always a particularly unimportant character. There were reportedly a total of eight Bobbies throughout the series. Not exactly a dream role.
A Bad Move
Topher Grace was the quirky leading man on That 70’s Show for seven seasons, before leaving to pursue a career in feature films. Ashton Kutcher, who played Kelso, left the show in the same year. The two characters were merged into one and replaced by Josh Myer’s character Randy. Sadly, fans loathed Randy. The ratings plummeted and the show was canceled. Tough break, guys.
The success of New Girl rides on the charm and loveliness of the leading lady played by Zooey Deschanel. When Deschanel temporarily left the show due to her taking maternity leave, her character was seemingly replaced by Megan Fox’s character Reagan. The characters could not have been more dissimilar and it was felt by the sows disappointed fans. Luckily, after giving birth to her baby girl, Zooey made a triumphant return.
Rebecca vs. Diane
Cheers fans have always been super invested in their beloved characters. That’s why it was considered a pretty big deal when Shelley Long’s character Diane made an abrupt exit in season five and was replaced by the character Rebecca, played by Kirstie Alley. Despite some initial panic, fans settled down, ratings increased and the show continued to run for another six seasons.
A Magical Turn of Events
Charmed was a pretty huge success. The show followed the adventures of witch sisters Prue, Piper and Phoebe Halliwell played by Shannen Doherty, Holly Marie Combs, and Alyssa Milano respectively. After the third season, tension between Milano and Doherty reached boiling point and Shannon was given the boot. The character was replaced by Rose McGowan. Despite the change, the show didn’t suffer and stayed on for another three seasons.
Meg No More
It took us a long time to realize that Mila Kunis wasn’t the original voice of Meg Griffin. If only for the fact that, like the other characters on the show, we don’t pay attention to Meg. When we finally did realize that there was a different voice before Kunis, we found out it was Mean Girls’Lacey Chabert. Was she a diva? Did Kunis swoop in and claim the spotlight? Creator Seth MacFarlane said there was a mistake on her contract and that she didn’t intend to stay for the full run of the show. She wanted to go.
Stunning British model Rosie Huntington Whiteley replaced Megan Fox in the Transformers movie ‘Dark Of The Moon’. However it wasn’ just fans that were upset by this obvious switch of character. Actor Shia Shia LaBeouf
stated: Megan Fox’s absence changed ‘Transformers’ vibe’.
The hilarious Seinfeld followed the antics of Jerry, Elaine, George and Kramer. The show became a cultural phenomenon and even the sitcom’s most minor characters were shot to stardom. Mega fans might be surprised to learn that Jerry Seinfeld’s father was sneakily played by two different actors. John Randolph played Frank Costanza in only one episode and was then replaced by comedian Jerry Stiller. To cover up the recasting, the scenes were reshot for syndication.