Finding the perfect actor for any given role is a difficult task. Having to look at what they offer as a performer, what emotional aspects require attention, and sometimes, what they can provide in a marketing sense; it is far from an exact science, and a mis casting decision can be a disastrous error that occurs when a series fails to connect with an audience. Despite this, the ideal casting of an important character can be the defining feature of a series success.
These actors played their roles to a level that it is impossible to fathom anyone else else in these roles. We take our hats off to these fantastic performances and give a thank you to those who directed them.
Annalise Keating (Viola Davis) ''How To Get Away With Murder'' (2014-2020)
Annalise Keating is a courageous, cunning, and an extremely professional defense attorney and well-known law school professor who excels in her work. Dig deeper as the series continues, and you discover a character full of hypocrisy, contradiction, and ambition.
Viola Davis adopted to be an inspiration for one of the most diverse women to have mastered television. She also praised Annalise''s intricate and complicated personality and her tormented backstory with aplomb. She also gained an Emmy for Outstanding Lead in a Drama series, becoming the first black woman to achieve this feat.
Don Draper (Jon Hamm) ''''Mad Men''''(2007-2015)
With a tumultuous family life and a traumatic past that blossoms through his calm exterior on many occasions, Jon Hamm is now considered the only actor to have played Don Draper.
Hamm surpassed the depths of Drapers on the screen and earned eight Emmy nominations for his efforts, culminating in his first appearance in the final season. It may have claimed Hamm to stardom, but what he did with it has now immortalized Don Draper as one of the top TV shows.
The X-Files (Dana Scully, Gillian Anderson) (1993-2002; 2016-2018)
The ''90s television hit still resonates with audiences today, but it gained a stand in 2016 because of its long-standing popularity. It cannot be underestimated how much of that is attributed to Gillian Anderson''s portrayal of Dana Scully, an FBI special agent who is investigating the supernatural.
Andersons'' performance came in the moments when her steadfast convictions were challenged by the things she saw. In honor of a Primetime Emmy, Dana Scully continues to be a motivating her young women to this day.
(Michael Kenneth Williams) ''The Wire'' (2002-2008) Omar Little (Michael Kenneth Williams) ''The Wire'' (2002-2008)
Omar Little, an unaffiliated stick-up man who robs drug dealers at gunpoint and avoids prosecution through the back alleys of Baltimore, was never going to be a character who would struggle to be interesting. However, the role of Michael Kenneth Williams improved from a side character to The Wires'' most recognizable.
Omar appointed gay stereotypes as well. While Williams was humble to depict this particular aspect, the character is well-known for his flamboyance, his strong belief in a moral code, and his walk and whistle through the Baltimore streets.
''Downton Abbey'' (2010-2015) by Violet Crawley (Maggie Smith)
While Maggie Smith could do the role in the show, she was, even for her, exceptional. The Matriarch of Downton Abbey, she never let the council members forget who was in charge.
Imposing her presence with razor-sharp delivery, Smith excelled in bringing Violet Crawleys to life. She won three Primetime Emmys from six nominations and redefined her abilities to a younger audience who recognized her as Professor McGonagall.
''The Office'' by Michael Scott (Steve Carell)(2005-2013)
With an overwhelming enthusiasm and profound insensitivity, Michael Scott might be the awkward presence audience he dislikes, but in Steve Carells hands, he couldnt have been more adored. There was something profoundly satisfying beneath Carells'' comedy.
Perhaps the first true glimpses of the acting ability he would go on to earn acclaim for, his outbursts of unrestrained emotion were able to both warm and break our hearts. Enshrining Michael Scott in the minds of every fan of the series, his departure in season seven was a shady farewell we were ill-prepared for.
(1989-1998), George Costanza (Jason Alexander) ''Seinfeld''
With engulfing gusto, Jason Alexander brought every whinge, rant, and outburst of George Costanza to the screen. He is a self-loathing, self-serving liar who conjured outrageous plots to wease out of uncomfortable situations. He is about as despicable as a character ever developed for television comedy, but therein lies his charm.
On occasion, everyone thought, felt, and perhaps even acted like George, and Alexander personifies the brand of unsettling distress with an honest and endearing hilarity. Honorable mentions go to Estelle Harris and Jerry Stiller for their equally superior performances as Georges parents.
"Breaking Bad" by Walter White (Bryan Cranston)(2008-2013)
If you had told people that the father from Malcolm In The Middle was going to play one of the greatest actors in crime-drama history, you would have received some odd looks. Today, however, it is impossible to imagine anyone else as Walter White.
Bryan Cranston proclaimed himself one of the greatest actors of the day, bringing Walt from a clever science teacher to one of the most powerful figures in the Americas drug market in a way that was both terrifying and captivating. The villain of the series, Walter was apparent to be painful to love, but even harder to dislike. The role was enormous, making Breaking Bad the unmissable spectacle.
''Game of Thrones''(2011-2019) by Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage)
Tyrion Lannister and Peter Dinklage instantly recall when it comes to characters who couldn''t have been shown by anyone else. Dinklage was a cynical, mistreated member of his charming house, and Dinklage possessed a great ability to mix the character''s wit and resilience with a particular vulnerability.
With his shaky wit, tactical brilliance, unexpected bravery, and, above all else, his kindness, Dinklage arose from the media as one of the most sought-after performers in the 2010s.
''The Sopranos'' (James Gandolfini) ''The Sopranos''(1999-2007)
Through Tony Soprano, a New Jersey gangster, who played his violent actions against the crowd in the small screen, James Gandolfini was not only a great casting choice, but he was also instrumental in making television series the force they are today.
Though Gandolfini was a success, it is impossible to figure out whether or not he was the intimidating criminal thug or the charming family man, as seen in his therapy sessions with Dr. Melfi (Lorraine Bracco). Gandolfini won three Primetime Emmys for his portrayal of the iconic character and re-created the concept of a modern gangster in a manner that only he could.
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