Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Acronyms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to casting: Die casting, Sand casting
(straight) from central casting
(sometimes capitalized as Central Casting) Having, fitting, or conforming to well-established stereotypical traits or characteristics of a given type of person, character, group, situation, or style. The phrase is a reference to Central Casting, a California-based casting company that specializes in hiring for roles as extras, body doubles, and for bit parts. My grandfather looks like a cowboy from central casting, with his boots, Stetson hat, and mouth full of chewing tobacco. It was a campy, schlocky B-movie, complete with pointless romance, cheesy special effects, and an alien monster straight from Central Casting.
(straight) out of central casting
(sometimes capitalized as Central Casting) Having, fitting, or conforming to well-established stereotypical traits or characteristics of a given type of person, character, group, situation, or style. The phrase is a reference to Central Casting, a California-based casting company that specializes in hiring for roles as extras, body doubles, and for bit parts. My grandfather looks like a cowboy out of central casting, with his boots, Stetson hat, and mouth full of chewing tobacco. It was a campy, schlocky B-movie, complete with pointless romance, cheesy special effects, and an alien monster straight out of Central Casting.
cast (some) light on (something)
To reveal information or details about something; to clarify or help people understand something. We've hired a private investigator to help cast light on the clandestine dealings of the baron. These documents we've uncovered cast some light on how the late author's final book was meant to end.
cast (some) light upon (something)
To reveal information or details about something; to clarify or help people understand something. (A more formal version of "cast (some) light on something.") We've hired a private investigator to help cast light upon the clandestine dealings of the baron. These documents we've uncovered cast some light upon how the late author's final book was meant to end.
To decide something by picking an item, often a slip of paper, at random. Let's cast lots to decide who will go first—it's the only fair way to do it.
cast about for (something)
1. To search for or seek something by looking randomly or in many places. (In fishing, "casting" is the act of throwing one's fishing line or net into the water.) Although Pam has taken classes in a variety of disciplines during her three years at college, she's still casting about for a major.
2. To create a plan or method for doing something. The boss wants us to cast about for a way to improve that floundering program.
See also: cast
cast around for (someone or something)
To search for or seek something by looking randomly or in many places. (In fishing, "casting" is the act of throwing one's fishing line or net into the water.) Tell Human Resources to cast around for a new assistant for our department. Although Pam has taken classes in a variety of disciplines during her three years at college, she's still casting around for a major.
1. To physically move something that is blocking one's path. A noun or pronoun can be used between "cast" and "aside." Sorry there's so much junk in here right now—just cast those books aside and have a seat.
2. To ignore, overlook, or reject someone or something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "cast" and "aside." Of course I'm not trying to cast you aside, you're my best friend! I simply haven't had time to call you this week. To attempt that daring jump on your bike, you'll need to cast aside your fears.
1. To return something to its original location. A noun or pronoun can be used between "cast" and "back." If you decide against any of those library books, please cast them back where you found them.
2. To refer or think back to something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "cast" and "back." In the second chapter of your thesis, be sure to cast back to the topics and themes you presented in chapter one. I tried casting my mind back to high school algebra and couldn't remember a thing.
1. To throw something to the ground. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "cast" and "down." When she heard us mocking her, she cast down her book and stormed out of the room.
2. To lower something (typically one's gaze). Because my son is so shy, he usually casts down his eyes whenever he meets someone.
cast (one's) lot in with (someone or something)
To join another person or become part of a group. Don't worry, mom—I really don't care about casting my lot in with the cool kids at school.
cast (one's) lot with (someone or something)
To join and steadfastly support another person or group. As soon as news of the CEO's scandal becomes public, I doubt that big investor will want to cast her lot with us. Don't worry, mom—I really don't care about casting my lot with the cool kids at school.
1. verb To leave the dock, as of a ship and its crew. A noun or pronoun can be used between "cast" and "off." We won't be staying here for long—we cast off again at sunrise.
2. verb To remove, dispose of, or shed something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "cast" and "off." Once you become a parent, you might decide to delegate more of your tasks—or cast off the title of CEO entirely. Mom told me I have to cast some things off before I'm allowed to add any more clothes to my closet. To attempt that daring jump on your bike, you'll need to cast off your fears.
3. verb To approximate how much space a manuscript will fill once typeset. A noun or pronoun can be used between "cast" and "off." You'll get a better idea of your novel's length in print once the publisher casts it off.
4. verb To remove the last row of stitches from the needle and complete the edge of a knitting project. A noun or pronoun can be used between "cast" and "off." Now that the blanket is long enough, the next step is to cast off.
5. noun Someone or something that has been ignored, overlooked, or rejected. The phrase is often hyphenated in this usage. Of course you're still my best friend, not some cast-off! I just haven't had time to call you this week, that's all. Once you sort through your closet, give me any cast-offs, and I'll sell them at the yard sale.
6. noun An approximation of how much space a manuscript will fill once typeset. In this usage, the phrase can be written as one word ("castoff"). A castoff will give you a better idea of your novel's length in print.
1. To make the first row of stitches on the needle in a knitting project. If you want to knit a blanket, the first step is to cast on.
2. To dress quickly or hurriedly. Because I overslept, I just cast on some clothes and rushed off to work—without realizing that I had on two different shoes.
To forcibly expel or dismiss someone or something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "cast" and "out." After I got in yet another fight at school, the headmaster cast me out. Until you cast out these outdated hiring practices, your company will never attract top talent.
cast (one's) pearls before swine
To present something valuable to one who does not recognize its worth. The phrase originated in the Bible. Most of the time, playing classical music for high schoolers is like casting your pearls before swine. But every so often a few kids appreciate it. I can't believe he gave his brand-new convertible to that bumpkin—talk about casting your pearls before swine.
cast the first stone
To be the first to criticize someone or something. OK, fine, I'll cast the first stone—that movie was awful! Alicia cast the first stone, but of course the boss heard me—and only me—complaining about him.
1. To throw or toss someone or something ashore. A noun or pronoun can be used between "cast" and "up." The choppy waters cast me up, coughing and spluttering on the beach. A child must have lost a toy boat in the ocean because the waves just cast up its wreckage.
2. To calculate something. The morning after another rather indulgent evening, I decided it was high time for me to cast up my accounts.
the casting couch
A phenomenon in which prospective employees (typically females) are propositioned for sexual favors in exchange for promised employment or career advancement. The practice is most associated with the entertainment industry, and the term refers to the actual piece of furniture in a casting director's office where such encounters may occur. According to many accounts, the casting couch is alive and well in Hollywood.
cast off (from something)
[for the crew of a boat or ship] to push away from the dock or pier; to begin the process of navigating a boat or ship. The crew cast off from the dock. It's time to cast off.
cast someone asideand cast someone off; cast someone away
Fig. to dispose of someone; to reject or discard someone. He simply cast his wife aside, and that was it.
cast someone or something up
[for the waves] to bring up and deposit someone or something on the shore. The waves cast the wreckage up, and it was found on the shore. The waves cast up the wreckage of a boat.
cast something asideand cast something off; cast something away
to throw something away. You can't just cast aside a new coat that you've only worn once.
cast something back (some place)
to throw something back somewhere. I cast the fish back in the water. Cast back those stones and all the others you took from the pile.
cast something down
to hurl or throw something down. She cast the glass down, breaking it into a thousand pieces. She cast down the tray and all that was on it.
cast the first stone
Fig. to make the first criticism; to be the first to attack. (From a biblical quotation.) Well, I don't want to be the one to cast the first stone, but she sang horribly. John always casts the first stone. Does he think he's perfect?
1. Throw down, hurl to the ground, as in She cast down her coat on the grass. [Late 1400s]
2. Bend down, lower, as in He cast down his eyes. [Late 1300s]
1. Discard, reject, as in He cast off his clothes and jumped in the pool. This term was already used figuratively in Miles Coverdale's translation of the Bible (1535): "Thy mother ... that hath cast off her housebonds and her children" (Ezekiel 16:45).
2. Let go, set loose, as in He cast off the line and the boat drifted from the dock. [Second half of 1600s]
3. In knitting, to finish the last row of stitches, that is, take the stitches off the needle and form a selvage. For example, Your sweater is finished; I just have to cast off. [Late 1800s] Also see cast on, def. 1.
1. Make the first stitches in knitting, putting them on the needle, as in Once you learn how to cast on, you can use either simple or complicated stitches. [Mid-1800s]
2. Hastily put on clothes, as in He cast on his coat and ran out. This usage is dying out. [Early 1800s]
Forcibly drive out, expel, as in We have to cast out these old-fashioned ideas and methods. [Late 1200s]
cast the first stone
Also, throw the first stone. Be quick to blame, criticize, or punish, as in She's always criticizing her colleagues, casting the first stone no matter what the circumstances . The term comes from the New Testament (John 8:7), where Jesus defends an adulteress against those who would stone her, saying "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her." Also see people who live in glass houses; pot calling the kettle black.
cast (or throw) the first stonebe the first to accuse or criticize.
The phrase comes from an incident recorded in St John's Gospel. A group of men preparing to stone an adulterous woman to death were addressed by Jesus with the words: ‘He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her’ (John 8:7).
the ˈcasting couch(informal, humorous) used to refer to a situation in which somebody, especially a woman, agrees to have sex with somebody else in order to get work in a film/movie, TV programme, etc: the Hollywood casting couch for starlets
1. To throw or push something or someone out of the way: I cast my coat aside so that he could sit down. She cast aside the boxes in front of the door.
2. To reject or disregard something or someone: The commander cast aside all caution and ordered the troops to charge the fort. I knew you would cast me aside once you became famous.
1. To discard or reject something: Each year the principal would cast off her role as disciplinarian and perform in the school play. The load was too heavy, so we cast it off and left it behind.
2. To let something go; set something loose: I cast off the bow line and let the boat drift in the current. The crew grabbed the lines and cast them off as the captain started the engines. The crew remained on the boat, ready to cast off at the first sign of trouble.
3. To estimate the space some manuscript will occupy when set into type: The publisher cast off the manuscript to see how long the book would be. We cast each chapter off separately in order to save time.
4. Chiefly British To secure some number of stitches in knitting and form an edge by lifting one stitch over the next: When the scarf was the correct length, I cast off. Cast off 12 stitches on the next row to make the neck edge. Make 5 stitches on the next row and cast them off.
1. To cause something to fall upon or come into contact with something: The moon cast its light on the snowy countryside.
2. To cause or give rise to some critical valuation about something or someone: These facts cast doubt on the suspect's story.
3. To make the first row of stitches in knitting by putting some number of stitches on a knitting needle: Be careful not to cast on too tightly or it will be difficult to knit the first row. Start by casting on 18 stitches. Make 4 loops and cast them on.
To drive someone or something out by force; expel someone or something: The board of directors cast out the company president after a trading scandal. When I questioned their methods, they cast me out of the group.
n. a legendary couch found in the offices of casting directors for use in seducing young people by offering them roles. They say the director got his job on the casting couch, too.
n. selecting amateurs to be performers or models. I do a lot of street-casting. Almost everybody can act a little.