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Why Fox's 'Delirium' should succeed and who should star

Is love a disease?

That's the question that'll be posed on Fox this fall, should its latest pilot order, "Delirium," get picked up by the network. The show is based on the best-selling young adult book trilogy -- the first book shares its name -- by Lauren Oliver.

The story follows young Lena Haloway, who lives in a dystopian version of Portland, Maine, where love is considered a disease and the root of all evil. Thankfully, there's a cure, and teenagers of a certain age are supposed to have a procedure to remove the part of the brain responsible for such feeling. Lena (and her best friend, Hana) is only a summer away from getting the cure when she meets the mysterious Alex, whom she quickly learns is an Invalid (or person of age who hasn't had the cure).

[Related: TV pilot season: See which stars are on their way to primetime for fall 2013]

We have to confess we were surprised to hear that "Delirium" was headed to the small screen -- from previous announcements about its adaptation, it definitely looked to be heading in the movie direction. Still, we're a bit relieved -- after the success of "The Hunger Games," there are already far too many dystopian Y.A. film adaptations in the works.

Sabrina Weiss, senior editor of VH1 Celebrity, agrees, adding, "A TV show has a better chance to thrive. This world Oliver's created has so many possibilities for plots -- couples broken up because of the cure, people who fall in love despite it, rebels working underground and outside the walls."

Needless to say, we can't wait to see who will play the three main characters. Here are our picks, as well as some from a few experts.


Our heroine isn't supposed to be stereotypically beautiful -- she describes herself as "in-between in every way" -- and is 5-foot-2 with brown hair. With that in mind, we'd like to throw "Parenthood" starlet (alum?) Sarah Ramos into the ring. She's that kind of gorgeous that you didn't see coming. It sneaks up on you and then, when paired with her immense talent, kind of blows your mind that you didn't see it in the first place.

See Sarah Ramos on "Parenthood":

"I can see 'The Vampire Diaries' alum Malese Jow filling the role of Lena," says Sara Gundell, editor of Novel Novice. "As a fan favorite on that show, she proved she can capture an audience and hold a leading role. Jow could nicely balance the weaknesses and strengths needed to portray Lena, as well as the range of emotions and actions."

While Weiss is fantasizing about Abigail Breslin making a leap to TV for this part, Amy Wilkinson of MTV's Hollywood Crush agrees with Gundell: "Malese is a near-perfect physical facsimile of how I imagined our dystopian heroine to look. But don't let that pint-sized frame fool you: The actress possesses some big-time acting chops, too."

[Related: See Malese Jow on 'The Vampire Diaries']


For Lena's blond and beautiful BFF, we'd like to pluck the plucky Britt Robertson, who would bring some real moxie to the role. Gundell feels that former "Ringer" actress Zoey Deutsch "could easily hold her own against whomever producers cast as Lena and Alex."

See Britt Robertson on "The Secret Circle":

Wilkinson regrets Blake Lively's age -- "she'd fit the role of Lena's leggy, blond BFF like a bespoke LBD" -- but has settled on "Pretty Little Liars" lady Sasha Pieterse, explaining that "if the 16-year-old's turn as deceased queen bee Alison is any indication, Sasha is well-suited to play a ravishing rabble-rouser." Weiss concurs, adding, "I love her unconventional beauty and want to see her try to be something other than a bitchy ghost."


Who has the chops and the looks to play everyone's future fictional boyfriend, Alex? He's described as having auburn hair, gold eyes, and tan skin, which, minus the skin, sounds far too much like a certain sparkly vampire. We're going to guess that auburn hair will go brown lickety-split, so we're nominating former "Life Unexpected" love interest Rafi Gavron. Like Alex, he looks wise beyond his years (he's only 23) and totally badass.

Weiss is "going against any physical descriptions and ignoring his current employment status" to rally for hot "Glee" newcomer Jacob Artist. "You need some racial diversity in this future, and he's a great combination of tough and sensitive -- perfect for Alex's outlaw status and romantic nature."

See Jacob Artist on "Glee":

Wilkinson prays for former "Weeds" stud Hunter Parrish to get the gig simply so that she can enjoy seeing more of him while nominates Dennis Quaid and Meg Ryan's son, Jack Quaid. "He had a small, relatively villainous role in 'The Hunger Games' as Marvel and has yet to land a major blockbuster, making him a prime target for the leading male role in a TV series. … He can easily capture the charm and rebel appeal of Alex while still pulling on the heartstrings of young fans everywhere."

Now it's your turn. Whom would you like to see in this adaptation? Are you rooting for any of our picks? Be sure to let us know in the comments section.