Can you picture "The Hunger Games" without Jennifer Lawrence or "The Fault in Our Stars" without Shailene Woodley? Both roles almost went to Hailee Steinfeld. (Our minds are blown, too — we’ll give you a minute.)
Throughout the long casting processes for some of our favorite YA films, plenty of familiar names popped up along the way. Chloe Grace Moretz could have slung a bow and arrow as Katniss Everdeen, but instead, she ended up as Mia in “If I Stay.” Lily Collins almost went vampy as Bella in “Twilight,” but ultimately fought demons in “The Mortal Instruments” instead.
Keep reading to see all of the role swaps that could have happened in this wacky alternate universe.
Katniss Everdeen, “The Hunger Games”
The "Skins" star didn’t play Katniss, but she’ll make her YA movie splash in "The Maze Runner" this month.
Chloe Grace Moretz
The “Kick-Ass” star could have done some serious damage as Katniss, but she didn’t make the cut.
Though Shailene would go on to star in “Divergent,” she wasn’t right for Katniss. “Yeah, I definitely auditioned. It wasn’t, like, a great audition,” she admitted to us in 2012. "But I think that Jennifer Lawrence is perfect for that role. She’s so strong as a woman and one thing that I really love from her is that I love it when women live from their groin, just to say they own their woman power and she totally does.”
Emma told us in 2011 that she was “definitely interested in it, but it was just one of those things that didn't end up happening.”
Though she didn’t end up as Katniss, Saoirse starred in two other YA adaptations: Stephenie Meyer's "The Host” and Alice Sebold’s “The Lovely Bones.”
Can you imagine "Little Miss Sunshine" embracing her "Zombieland" side and slinging weapons? Abigail ultimately ended up in "Ender's Game" instead.
In 2011, Hailee met with “Hunger Games” director Gary Ross and dished to us about her potential casting. “It’s definitely something that we’re taking one day at a time and making sure that everything is in place," she revealed. She later went on to star in YA favorite “Ender’s Game.”
Bella Swan, “Twilight”
“I was actually supposed to star in that, but I was on Buffy at the time,” she told Entertainment Weekly. "I guess schedules never worked out."
Emily was reportedly author Stephenie Meyer's number one choice for Bella, but the role went to fair-skinned Kristen Stewart instead.
Jennifer is actually thankful she didn’t land the part of Bella. “I remember when the first movie came out, seeing Kristen Stewart on the red carpet and getting papped wherever she went,” she told The Guardian. "I’d had no idea “Twilight' would be such a big deal. For me, and assuming for her, it was just another audition. Then it turned into this whole other thing.”
“Twilight” was actually one of Lily’s first auditions ever. "Yeah, one of my first auditions actually was for 'Twilight' which is really funny now thinking about it,” she told Crave Online in 2013. “I think every young actor or actress in Hollywood starts to read some of the same material but I think everything happens for a reason and everyone who gets the roles they get were meant to. I’m a firm believer in that.” She went on to play Clary in “The Mortal Instruments” series.
Mia Hall, “If I Stay”
Dakota was originally set to star in the film’s first incarnation in 2009, but left the project to shoot the final “Twilight” films
Emily Browning was also in the running to play Mia in the 2009 version of the film.
Hazel Grace Lancaster, “The Fault in Our Stars”
Hailee was reportedly one of the last up against Shailene to play the cancer-stricken teen.
Liana, who starred in director Josh Boone’s movie “Stuck in Love,” reportedly almost landed the part, too.
Mary Kate Wiles
Mary Kate was a fan favorite to play Hazel, and after she lost out to Shailene, she revealed she "went after it with everything that I had."
Trick question! No one else auditioned for the part of Tris. Shailene met with producer Doug Wick and director Neil Berger and snagged the part immediately. They were planning on organizing a nationwide search for the "challenging" casting, but instead, "by the end of the meeting, we knew we had found the perfect Tris."