47. Abbie Cornish – Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Much has been made about 2017 Best Picture nominee Three Bilboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri and its problematic white redemption arc, but one glaring issue with the film that no one seemed to talk about was the casting of Abbie Cornish as Anne, the wife of Woody Harrelson’s Chief Willoughby. While there’s nothing wrong with Cornish’s actual performance, it’s odd to see her playing a character married to someone who is significantly older than her.
Harrelson is 21 years older than Cornish and though there are many relationships that exist between partners with significant age gaps, this isn’t the first time we’ve seen Harrelson paired with someone much younger than him (look to Michelle Monaghan in HBO’s True Detective). Given the socioeconomic status of the characters in Three Billboards, it would have made much more sense to cast someone older than Cornish in the role
46. Kate Bosworth – Superman Returns
More than a decade later, Superman Returns is a film that gets unfairly derided as a bad superhero movie, but Bryan Singer’s loving homage to Richard Donner has some really good things going for it. Unfortunately, Kate Bosworth’s casting as Lois Lane is difficult to defend; not because she turns in a poor performance, mind you (though she’s certainly no replacement for Margot Kidder) but rather because she was too young for the part. Bosworth was only 22 when filming began, which would have been fine if this was a Superman origin story featuring Clark Kent’s first encounter with a young Lois Lane. However, Superman Returns picks up five years after Superman left Earth, establishing that he already had a relationship with Lois before he ever left the planet.
If we do the math, Lois would have been a teenager when she was with Clark, which is a little uncomfortable considering she has a five-year-old son in the film. The idea of Superman impregnating a teenager (who was also somehow a big deal reporter at the time) probably wasn’t what the film was going for when Bosworth was cast. We can understand wanting a young-looking actress to play Lois, especially since Brandon Routh was just 25 when he donned the red tights to play the Man of Steel, but Superman looking eternally young is kind of the point, isn’t it? Wouldn’t it have been more effective to have Clark return to Earth to find his former lover visibly aged, further reminding him of how removed he is from humanity? Oh well, at least Amy Adams didn’t turn out to be a much better Lois Lane when she first got the role in 2013’s Man of Steel.