10 Times People Were Recast in Power Rangers
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10 Times People Were Recast in Power Rangers

VOICE OVER: Andrew Tejada WRITTEN BY: Jonathan Alexander
It's morphin' recast time! For this list, we'll be looking at the most notable times actors were replaced in the “Power Rangers” franchise. Our countdown includes recasts of characters Alpha 5, Dulcea, Rita Repulsa and more!
Transcript
Welcome to WatchMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Times People Were Recast In Power Rangers. For this list, we’ll be looking at the most notable times actors were replaced in the “Power Rangers” franchise. Did you know about any of these recasts? Let us know in the comments!

#10: Hilary Shepard Turner as Divatox

“Power Rangers Turbo” (1997)
Fans were understandably surprised when the villain of “Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie” wasn’t Rita or Zedd. Instead, it introduced the zany space pirate, Divatox. She was played to perfection by Hilary Shepard Turner, who’s scene-stealing performance was something to behold. However, when production began on the “Turbo” show, Turner was on maternity leave. So Carol Hoyt was brought in to replace her for the first half of the series. It was a marked shift since Hoyt’s Divatox was much more menacing than the original. Many fans were happy when Turner returned for the second half of “Turbo,” and then during “In Space.”

#9: Richard Steven Horvitz as Alpha 5

“Power Rangers Turbo” (1997)
No one could ever forget the “Mighty Morphin” crew’s charming robot companion, Alpha 5. Richard Horvitz’s iconic vocal performance accompanied the original Rangers through some of their most famous stories. Thankfully, that legacy remains intact. Technically, Horvitz was never replaced. Instead, his character was written out altogether. When Zordon left for the planet Eltar during the “Turbo” show, Alpha 5 went with him. In his place, Alpha 6 took up the mantle as the Rangers’ robotic friend. They may have had the same look, but the new voice made it clear that this was not the same Alpha.

#8: Amy Miller as Trakeena

“Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue” (2000)
There are few villains in the entire morphing grid as scary as Trakeena was in “Power Rangers Lost Galaxy.” Amy Miller crafted a delightfully menacing, creepy, and sometimes downright gross character. But a salary dispute led to her exiting the “Lightspeed Rescue” crossover. Since Trakeena was supposed to be the big-bad in the team-up project, Jennifer Burns was quickly brought in as a replacement. The episode invented a reason for Trakeena to wear a mask, probably to disguise the fact Miller wasn’t reprising the role. It’s disappointing, but at least we’ll always have “Lost Galaxy.”

#7: Mariska Hargitay as Dulcea

“Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie” (1995)
If you want to get into the semantics, Mariska Hargitay was actually the one doing the replacing this time — until she was replaced herself. Gabrielle Fitzpatrick was originally cast in the role of Dulcea for “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie.” When she had to abruptly leave production for medical reasons, Hargitay was offered the part. After going to Australia to get things started, the actress was kept on hold for almost two months. She went home for Christmas, only to later learn that the role had reverted back to Fitzpatrick. We’ll never know what might have been had Hargitay gotten to become Dulcea.

#6: Chantz Simpson as Calvin Maxwell

“Power Rangers Ninja Steel” (2017-18)
It’s hard to imagine anyone playing the Yellow Ninja Steel Ranger as well as Nico Greetham. His dance background, chemistry with the cast, and innate presence made him an instant standout. So, it’s surprising to hear he wasn’t originally supposed to be Calvin. At first, the part was given to Chantz Simpson. They even flew him out to Morphicon, a “Power Rangers” convention, for a cast reveal event. But, for an undisclosed reason, Simpson was either let go or exited himself. In the end, it’s clear that Greetham was totally right for the part, anyway.

#5: Alexandra Nuñez as Izzy Garcia

“Power Rangers Dino Fury” (2021-)
The Green Dino Fury Ranger made history as the first openly LGBTQ+ hero in the mainline series. Given how groundbreaking this Ranger is to the franchise, it makes sense that it took a few rounds of auditions to find just the right actor. Alexandra Nuñez was initially slated to be Izzy before revealing on Instagram that she’d been recast. Ultimately, Tessa Rao put on the green spandex, and proved worthy of the morpher with a tender performance. Instead of becoming a mere token character, Rao elevated the material and made Izzy one of the series’ best Rangers, period.

#4: Heidi Bradhurt as Kayla

“Power Rangers RPM” (2009)
If you don’t recognize that name, you aren’t alone. Bradhurt was reportedly set to be an extra on “Power Rangers RPM.” Yet bizarrely, she was also apparently named as the Yellow Ranger, Kayla, online. “Rangers” fans will know that the Yellow RPM operator is Summer Landsdown, played by the fantastic Rose McIver. It’s unclear if the odd information on Bradhurt’s profile was a simple gaffe on the production side. If not, it’s possible they initially planned to take the Yellow RPM Ranger in a completely different direction. Either way, it’s hard to complain about McIver’s excellent turn as Summer. Truly, no one makes fighting crime in a wedding dress look that easy.

#3: Erin Simms as Maya

“Power Rangers Lost Galaxy” (1999)
Fans already know that Maya went through a lot in the first few episodes of “Power Rangers Lost Galaxy.” But it turns out the character had issues even before a single episode aired. Up-and-coming actress Erin Simms brought Maya to life through the early stages of production. However, she shockingly ended up quitting the part. Apparently, she was questioning her acting career altogether. Even though on-set photos indicate that filming was already well underway by the time she left, the casting team managed to find Cerina Vincent to fill in. Fortunately, Vincent’s warmth made Maya a character that’s still memorable to this day.

#2: Machiko Soga as Rita Repulsa

“Mighty Morphin Power Rangers” (1993-95)
In this series’ first season, the team’s main villain wasn’t actually original to “Power Rangers.” By adding English voiceovers, “Mighty Morphin”created their own Rita by reusing footage of Machiko Soga’s performance from the Japanese “Super Sentai” series. When Rita appeared again in the second season, Carla Perez was the one physically filling her shoes. Perez wasn’t the only new Rita on the block, and Julia Cortez was also brought in to play her in “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie.” Soga later returned for a quick part in “Mystic Force,” but was replaced yet again in 2017. In that film, Elizabeth Banks became the fourth actress to play Rita. And that’s not even counting the voice actors!

#1: Audri Dubois as Trini Kwan

“Mighty Morphin Power Rangers” (1993-95)
The original cast of “Rangers” is downright legendary. That’s why it’s so weird to see the team with a completely different Trini. Audri Dubois was supposed to play the Yellow Ranger, and even completed filming a version of the first episode. Dubois is certainly talented and good in the role in her own right, but it’s impossible for anyone to replace the original gang in the hearts of most “Ranger” fans. Dubois reportedly asked for higher pay, and was subsequently let go. They then reshot the pilot with Thuy Trang as Trini, and the instant chemistry created the Ranger team most audiences remember best. The rest is morphenomenal history.
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