Alden Ehrenreich was cast as the young Han Solo for an upcoming standalone film, and some "Star Wars" fans aren't happy about Disney's decision. But, as the following actors can attest, he wasn't the first combative casting decision -- and he certainly won't be the last.
Ben Affleck as Batman
When it was announced that Affleck would star opposite the Man of Steel in Zack Snyder's "Batman v Superman," the decision was met with tens of thousands of protests, with reasons ranging from his dissimilarity to Batman to his artlessness as an actor. Following the movie's release, however, fans are backpedaling on their initial assessment. But any Batman actor is likely to face fierce scrutiny, as you'll see later in the list...
Daniel Craig as James Bond
The British actor joined a long and venerable list of performers who've portrayed 007, so when he was cast in "Casino Royale," many reflexively dismissed him as James Bond because he lacked sex appeal. And -- the humanity -- his hair was BLOND! Now, of course, he's considered a favorite among the pantheon of Bonds despite his disparaging comments about the role.
Heath Ledger as The Joker
Fans everywhere were LIVID that the star of "10 Things I Hate About You" was cast as the Clown Prince of Crime, not least of which because Jack Nicholson elevated the role to sublime status in Tim Burton's "Batman." But after "The Dark Knight" was released, fans praised Ledger's performance, for which the late actor won an Oscar.
Matt Damon as Jason Bourne
Before Damon was cast in 2002's "The Bourne Identity," he had only starred in prestige dramas and Gus Van Sant movies. The idea of casting him in an action movie then seemed outlandish to many, but now the name Bourne is synonymous with Damon.
Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss EverdeenIn Suzanne Collins' "Hunger Games" books, Katniss is described as a brown-haired, olive-skinned girl. But Lawrence was a 20-year-old blonde with blue eyes, rousing ire among fans who had long debated the ideal candidate. It's safe to say, four movies and $1.5 billion later, that debate has been settled.
Tom Cruise in "Interview with the Vampire"Fans of Anne Rice's novel saw blood red over the decision to cast Cruise as Lestat, with the author herself even objecting to it. But she, unlike all the other haters, recanted her criticism after seeing "Vampire," praising the actor as one of the best things about the film.
Michael Keaton as BatmanWhen Keaton was cast as Batman in Tim Burton's 1989 "Batman," the decision was met with heaps of resistance; he was allegedly too small, not fit enough and/or didn't resemble Bruce Wayne. But once the movie hit theaters, fanboys ate their words.
Jamie Dornan/Dakota Johnson in "Fifty Shades of Grey"It's unlikely either actor was the first choice for fans of E.L. James' S&M novels, many pointing out the lack of sparks between the two where there were supposed to be kilowatts of sexual chemistry. Dornan's chiseled body and Johnson's convincing turn as the innocent Anastasia Steele, however, threw cold water on those concerns.
Robert Pattinson as Edward CullenFans of the "Twilight" series of books didn't think Pattinson had what it took to inhabit the mysterious, fantastical Edward Cullen. One film later, those same fans were evenly divided between #TeamEdward or #TeamJacob, pitting two physically and mentally different men vying for Bella Swan's heart.
Tobey Maguire as Spider-ManMany thought Maguire lacked the resemblance and/or wits to play Peter Park in 2002's "Spider-Man," but he evidently swayed enough fans to warrant two more turns at the role.
Anne Hathaway as CatwomanFans were dubious that Hathaway could go from a young royal in "The Princess Diaries" to a sexy swindler in a skin-tight leather suit. Lo and behold, TheWrap's lead film critic Alonso Duralde said (without irony) that Hathaway "steals the show," The Daily Beast characterized her performance as "stellar" and Vanity Fair called her "the best Catwoman ever."
Renee Zellweger as Bridget JonesA Texas-born actress playing a mousy Brit? That was chief among the complaints over Zellweger's casting in the London-set romcom, thought detractors left room for carping about what a nobody she was, as well. Now "Bridget Jones' Diary" is considered a classic, Zellweger having become synonymous with the role, reprising it for the upcoming "Bridget Jones's Baby."
Henry Cavill as Superman
Man, comic book fans are sticklers about who can and cannot portray their heroes on screen. In Cavill's case, opponents disapproved of a British actor playing an American superhero, especially after Christopher Reeve's stellar likeness of the character. But Cavill won over fans in "Man of Steel" (how could he not, looking like that?), returning in the role for Zack Snyder's "Batman v Superman."
Adam Driver as Kylo Ren
The prospect of the "Girls" star playing the "Star Wars" reboot's primary villain had many fans worried. But once "The Force Awakens" hit theaters in December, many found his bratty Darth Vader fanboy posturing captivating.
Marlon Brando as Don Vito Corleone
Paramount executives fretted over the prospect of Brando as the Corleone family patriarch due to his poor recent box office results and short temper. However, author Mario Puzo and director Francis Ford Coppola fought for Brando in the role, and "The Godfather" is now considered one of the most influential films of all time.
Jennifer Lopez as SelenaThe singer herself has discussed the controversy over her casting as Selena Quintanilla-Pérez in the Warner Bros. film, acknowledging protests among the Tejano community that Lopez is a Puerto Rican from New York while Selena was a Mexican from Texas. Others groused about her poor spoken Spanish. However, Lopez was roundly praised for her performance, which most observers believe was the film's strength.
Tom Cruise as Jack ReacherWhen Cruise's casting as Jack Reacher was announced, many objected that the 5'7" actor didn't do the 6'5" antihero justice. The physical differences between Cruise and the subject of Lee Child's book series were dramatic. But the film was still a success, making $218 million on a production budget of $60 million.