Before I get started here, let me just put your mind at ease that there won’t be any spoilers in this post. I’ve read the book myself, which is informing my feelings about these two characters and the actors playing them, but I’m not gonna give any plot points away, so you can relax.
But just to set this up for you — Ben plays Nick Dunne, the husband to Amy, who becomes the ‘gone girl’ in question when she disappears under suspicious circumstances. And Neil plays Desi Collings, a man from Amy’s past whose role becomes important as the story moves forward and we learn more details about the disappearance.
Both men are supposed to be handsome (which works out great, because they are!), but Nick’s whole vibe is supposed to be cold, detached, and douche-y, which I think Neil would totally nail. And Desi is supposed to be creepy in a totally different way, like over-eager and immature, which is right up Ben’s alley. It makes total sense! Just watch the trailer and tell me I’m wrong.
See what I mean? Neil Patrick Harris can be chilling and intimidating just standing there, but I don’t think there’s a single thing Ben Affleck could do to his face to ever make it look anything but ‘dopey’. Too late to pull the old switcheroo on this casting? Gone Girl doesn’t come out until October 3rd, so I say we go for it.