series had already fired two Deans when Rudofsky and Casey got started
as casting directors. (Anthony says he had originally been conceived as a
more “alternative” character; when the part changed, it had to be
re-cast.) They weren’t even focused on finding a new Dean when a manager
called, telling them they had to meet his client before he went back to
Texas the next day.
“We said, ‘Well, we’re not auditioning that part yet,’” Rudofsky said. “He’s like, ‘I’m telling you, you have to meet this kid.’”
The two agreed, and soon enough, in walked Jared Padalecki—then 17, going on 18. And sure enough, he nailed it.
“We didn’t say anything to him,” Casey recalled. “We just gave the eye look, and asked him to step outside.”
that, Rudofsky ran to Sherman-Palladino’s trailer and asked her to read
Padalecki for the role before his flight back to Texas. She agreed, he
read, and he left.
Rudofsky said, Sherman-Palladino turned to her and Casey, and said,
“Well, that’s not fair.” When they asked why, she said, “You can’t cast
him on the first try.“
“She said, ‘It can’t be that easy; read more guys,’” Casey said.
And so, they did—but still, Padalecki landed the role.