Though the "gritty realism" of Wilson's novels was different to Dakota Blue Richards's first role as Lyra Belacqua in The Golden Compass, she was happy to take on the character of April. She said she "can really relate to the characters" in Wilson's novels, but found that April was "a really different person" to her. Wilson, who had previously seen Richards in The Golden Compass, was "over the moon to hear she was going to be in Dustbin Baby. Richards was to play the 14-year-old April, but other actresses were required to play younger versions of the character. Lucy Hutchinson, who was five at the time of filming, played the youngest April. Director Juliet May described her as "one of the most remarkable five year olds I have ever met", saying that "it's like she's not acting at all". Alex Hewitt was selected to play the "middle April". May described her as having "utter truth in her acting". Though ten years old, Hewitt plays April at eight.
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