When it comes to television, sometimes you need to swap out the ingredients to make a truly delicious show.
Recasting key characters after the pilot episode isn’t a new phenomenon. Johnny Depp replaced Jeff Yagher after the first episode of 21 Jump Street, Louie Anderson almost played Cousin Larry on Perfect Strangers, and Riff Regan was Willow in the unaired pilot of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Half the cast of Gilligan’s Island turned over after the pilot.
But thanks to the Internet and social media, recastings are becoming more mainstream news. Game of Thrones fans know that Daenerys Targaryen and Catelyn Stark were played by different actresses in the unaired pilot.
Sometimes, roles are recast because the actors aren’t available for the full series. Or there are cases when the show itself evolves, like Shondaland’s newest show, The Catch, which recast two major roles as it underwent a reboot.
Click through this slideshow to see side-by-side images of some surprising recast roles.