Jay Gatsby is as multidimensional as a character can get, and also as contradictory. Fitzgerald portrays him as extravagant and yearning, but at the same time ignorant, and rather stubborn, when it comes to change. He doesn't really want trouble with anyone, and he is a tad mysterious. But at the same time, he is quite social and he likes to have fun, especially at his parties. He also has a very confident demeanor, walking with his head held high, constantly using his "old sport" catch phrase. The one actor who comes to mind when it comes to all of these characteristics is none other than Bradley Cooper. Cooper is an actor who has played a wide array of characters, from simple beginnings like in Silver Linings Playbook to rich people like in Limitless. He has Gatsby's charm, but he also has a bit of seriousness to him that he can bring about relatively easily.
Tom Buchanan comes off as a stern and rough kind of man. Fitzgerald even illustrates that he has a "cruel body". But as the story moves along, he simply becomes disagreeable in almost every facet. There's obviously no truly disagreeable person that we could pick to play Tom, but we did feel that Tom Cruise could do a perfect job of portraying story's antagonist. While Tom Cruise has most of his experience as a protagonist character, he has played some roles where he is certainly mean and tough, namely Les Grossman in Tropic Thunder. That kind of experience is what we felt could help Tom Cruise portray Tom Buchanan the way Fitzgerald did in the book. That too, Tom Cruise is an extremely capable actor, someone who is more than qualified to mimic the expressions and demeanor of Tom Buchanan. He has the ability to get every scoff, every roll of the eyes, and every crossed arms, and truly represent Tom Buchanan.
Daisy Buchanan is nothing short of a charming and desired woman. She is portrayed in the book as very proper, someone who has only known money her whole life. Daisy has the ability to make men uncomfortable, and she can sometimes be too honest, especially when it comes to Nick Carraway. One would imagine that she is well versed in the proper behavior of a rich lady, especially a rich lady of the 1920s. So we have decided to cast Scarlett Johannson as Daisy. She is mainly known for her roles in Iron Man and The Avengers, but Scarlett Johannson has the overall look and impression of Daisy. She has the potential to be more "proper" and "girly" like Daisy is, and so she is our cast choice.
Myrtle Wilson, although not one of the main characters per se, is still important to the story. A stout woman, Myrtle Wilson is described as carrying herself well, with more of a thickish figure. She is rather bossy and conceited when it comes to her affair, and even her official marriage. Who better to play this character than Katherine Hepburn? In this picture (see right), Hepburn even has the cynical and uptight demeanor that Myrtle is known for. We feel that while she may not perfectly resemble Myrtle's figure, she is the perfect match to mimic her personality, expressions, and idiosyncrasies.
George Wilson is a character that the reader doesn't learn much about. Other than being the husband of the infamous Myrtle and being Tom's personal mechanic, George is a relatively unknown character, at least in terms of development. So there aren't any particular actor qualifications that we would be looking for. But Tom Hanks has the general look of what we thought George Wilson would look like. He has that certain feel of someone who is old, and he can use his acting experience to fake George Wilson's ignorance.
Nick Carraway is not inherently rich. Indeed, he is one of the few people in this book who worked for his money and earned it properly by selling bonds. He didn't come from a family of money like Daisy or Tom Buchanan. So we need to cast someone who can play the role of a character with money now, but also someone who hasn't always had money. Enter actor Matt Bomer. He is the star of the USA series White Collar where he plays the role of criminal informant for the FBI Neal Cafferey. Matt Bomer in this role, however, has a character who came from humble beginnings. So he would expertly be able to transition his acting from the White Collar role to this role.
Jordan Baker is another one of those more unknown characters. We don't really know much about her as a person other than that Nick had a romantic interest in her for some time and that she played golf for a living. But we felt that Portugese actress Daniela Ruah would be good for this role. Not only does she look like Jordan Baker (or at least how we imagined her), but she also has extensive experience in American film and television, so the fact that she is Portugese wouldn't have an impact.
Finally we have the role of Henry Gatz. Henry Gatz is again another character we don't know too much about. Instead, his appearance in the story allows us as the readers to learn more about his son, Jay Gatsby. Nevertheless, we decided to cast Dustin Hoffman. Not only does he have that fatherly look, he also has lots of acting experience.