Atlanta Casting Call: What happens when we put famous Atlantans in our favorite nerdy franchises?

After Stacey Abrams guest-starred on Star Trek, we decided to have some fun and imagine cameos for other famous Atlantans in our favorite fandoms

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Casting Atlantans in famous franchises

Illustration by Lindsay Mound

Dragon Con is a chance to let out the pop culture junkie inside of us—all of us. Don’t forget that even Atlanta’s most famous and powerful people are nerds, too. Just ask Trekkie Stacey Abrams about her cameo on Star Trek: Discovery this past spring. Her role as President of United Earth, the cooperation of all the planet’s nations into one unified governing body, seemed to perfectly align with the gubernatorial candidate and voting rights activist’s personality and ambition. That got us thinking: What other non-acting Atlanta celebrities might fit into a fantasy franchise? Here’s our dream casting:

Arthur Blank
Franchise:
Lord of the Rings
Character:
King Falconian
Description:
After building a kingdom of Middle Earth do-it-yourselfers, the King sits high upon the throne in his opulent retractable-roof hall and peers longingly into his seeing stone in search of the quarterback that will bring him the One Ring to Rule Them All.

Brian Maloof
Franchise: Star Wars/The Mandalorian
Character: Maloof The Cantina Keeper
Description: The Skywalkers aren’t the only family legacy in the galaxy. Maloof runs the competing cantina, first established by his father, in Mos Eisley—not the “wretched hive of scum and villainy” but rather a place where the politicos and activists of Tattooine can gather over blue milk and discuss post-Imperial politics in the shadow of the Pyke Syndicate.

Trae Young
Franchise: Harry Potter/Fantastic Beasts
Character: Travernious Youngbottom
Description: Despite his relatively diminutive stature among his fellow students at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Youngbottom is a master of charms, with the uncanny ability to bring his rivals defenses down and move seemingly unseen toward his goal. Not to mention that he is House Gryffindor’s all-time leading scorer on the Quidditch pitch.

Sara Blakely
Franchise: Marvel Cinematic Universe
Character: Shapeshifter
Description: She’s a CEO and one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential people in the world by day. But in her secret lab, she’s developed the technology to slenderize women and men so they battle supervillains or, even more impressively, allow them to fit into the work clothes they bought before the pandemic.

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