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Added by Coby

on 5 Apr 2011 12:13

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Actors/Actresses: Roles they refused or didn't get

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Sort by: Showing 40 items
Average listal rating (1745 ratings) 8.6  IMDB Rating
1. Jack Nicholson
Apocalypse Now
Turned down the role of Willard.

Bad Santa
Nicholson considered the film, but turned it down because he was already committed to Something's Gotta Give.

The Bonfire of the Vanities
Turned down the role of Peter Fallow.

Bruce Almighty
Turned down the role of God.

Caligula
Turned down the role of Caligula.

Dick Tracy
Turned down the role of Dick Tracy.

Down and Out in Beverly Hills
Was offered the role of the homeless man in the comedy remake of the great French classic but was committed for doing The Two Jakes first.

Equus
Nicholson was interested in playing Martin Dysart.

Family Plot
Jack Nicholson was considered for the part of the spiritualist's boyfriend in Alfred Hitchcock's final film but he had begun working on One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest and was unavailable.

The Godfather
Offered the part of Michael Corleone but declined.

Hoosiers
Jack Nicholson was the first choice to play Coach Norman Dale. He was interested but told them to go with another actor unless they were able to hold the shoot until the next year.

Kindergarten Cop
Turned down the lead role.

On a Clear Day You Can See Forever
Jack Nicholson barely starred in this film - most of his part as Tad Tingle was left on the cutting room floor including a musical number sung by him.

One Hour Photo
Turned down the role of Sy Parrish.

Rain Man
Turned down the role of Raymond.

Sorcerer
Turned down the leading role.

Striptease
Nicholson was in talks to play the Congressman.

Taxi Driver
Turned down the role of Travis Bickle.

Wall Street
He turned dowm the role of Gordon Gekko because he was already filming the Witches of Eastwick and Ironweed.

Witness
Nicholson liked the script but turned it down because, at the time, no director he liked was assigned to it. When Pater Weir, a director Nicholson admired took over the project, it was already too late.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1498 ratings) 8.6  IMDB Rating
2. Al Pacino
Bang the Drum Slowly
Pacino was cast to play the doomed baseball catcher, Bruce Pearson, but he left the role for The Godfather. Copolla suggested De Niro as a replacement.

Brother Sun, Sister Moon
Pacino auditioned but was rejected by the director (Franco Zeffirelli), who disliked his acting style.

Close Encounters of the Third Kind
Turned down the role of Roy Neary.

Crimson Tide
Turned down the lead role.

Days of Heaven
Turned down the lead role.

Elegy
Pacino pulled out of the film project based on Philip Roth's novel about the romance between an older professor and his beautiful young student. Years later, the project was revived with a different director and actors.

Misery
Turned down the lead role.

Flashdance
Turned down the part of Nick Hurley, because it would compromise with his "gangster" image.

Johnny Handsome
Pacino was originally attached to play the title character and worked on developing the script, but ultimately passed on the role.

The King of Marvin Gardens
Pacino was offered the role of David by director Bob Rafelson. He declined because he was contemplating starring in The Godfather.

Kramer vs. Kramer
Turned down the role of Ted Kramer.

Marathon Man
John Schlesinger wanted Al Pacino and Julie Christie to co-star in this production. Robert Evans insisted that Dustin Hoffman be cast.

Midnight Cowboy
Pacino was scheduled to make an appearance as a Vietnam vet but couldn't fit it in his schedule.

Misery
Turned down the lead role.

Slap Shot
Lost out on the lead role of the coach-player because he thought director George Roy Hill "facetious" when he asked if he could ice skate.

Runaway Bride
Turned down the lead role and opted to do Any Given Sunday.

Star Wars
Turned down the role of Han Solo.

Taxi Driver
Turned down the role of Travis Bickle.

Traffic
Turned down the role of Judge Wakefield.

The Usual Suspects
He turned down the role of Dave Kujan because he was already playing a cop in another movie around that time.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (2066 ratings) 8.6  IMDB Rating
3. Robert De Niro
Big
Was considered for the lead role but wanted too much money.

The Departed
Had to drop out of playing Queenan to go ahead with his own directorial project, The Good Shepherd.

Dick Tracy
Turned down the role of Dick Tracy.

Edge of Darkness
The actor departed the Mel Gibson-starring remake of the acclaimed BBC TV series during the first week of filming of his role; the reason cited was the standard "creative differences."

The Godfather
He read for the parts of both Sonny and Michael Corleone, but he would not be cast until Godfather II as Vito.

Home Alone
Turned down the role of Harry.

Jackie Brown
Originally he wanted to play the role of Max Cherry. Tarantino had his heart set on Robert Forster for the role, but offered him the part of Louis instead.

The Last Temptation of Christ
De Niro was attached to play Jesus at one point.

Misery
Turned down the lead role.

The Shining
According to IMDb, Stanley Kubrick considered Robert De Niro to play Jack Torrance, but changed his mind after he saw Taxi Driver.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1996 ratings) 8  IMDB Rating
4. Leonardo DiCaprio
American Psycho
Had to drop out of the lead role due to scheduling conflict. Christian Bale took over.

Angels & Demons
Leonardo DiCaprio turned down the role of Camerlengo Patrick McKenna. He declined despite being offered the role personally by Tom Hanks.

Batman Forever
Screen tested for the part of Robin.

Boogie Nights
DiCaprio was offered the lead role of Dirk Diggler. Leonardo did Titanic instead, and Mark Wahlberg took the part.

Don's Plum
DiCaprio and co-star Tobey Maguire won a lawsuit to stop this film directed by R.D. Robb from being released theatrically in the USA or Canada.

The Dreamers
He Chose to do The Aviator over this film.

Harvard Man
DiCaprio was set to play the lead role but they could not pay his salary. Adrian Grenier took over the part.

Higher Learning
DiCaprio was oringinaly cast to play Remey but opted to do The Quick and the Dead.

The Matrix
Leonardo DiCaprio turned down the part of Neo, supposedly because he was concerned about the amount of special effects.

Primal Fear
Turned down the lead role of Aaron Stampler.

Sin City
Turned down the role of Junior.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (2531 ratings) 7.9  IMDB Rating
5. Brad Pitt
About a Boy
Turned down the lead role of Will.

Alexander
He was considered for the role of Hephaestion, but turned down the role due to personal concerns with the character.

All the Pretty Horses
Turned down the role of John Grady Cole in the movie version of Cormac McCarthy's fine novel.

Almost Famous
The role of Russell was originally written for Brad Pitt who dropped out saying "I just don't get it enough to do it."

American Psycho
Pitt was offered the lead role at one point but turned it down.

Apollo 13
Turned down Apollo 13 in order to do Se7en.

The Bourne Identity
Pitt was lined up to play Jason Bourne but pulled out to play another secret agent in Spy Game

Bride & Prejudice
Couldn't accept the role of Mr. Darcy due to conflicting schedules.

The Chamber
Actually committed to the film but backed out along with director Ron Howard.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
He was refused for the role of Willy Wonka.

The Departed
He was cast as Sullivan but dropped out. He did continue to produce the film.

The Devil's Advocate
Pitt was originally set to play Kevin back when Joel Schumacher was signed on to direct.

The Fountain
Pulled out of Darren Aronofsky's sci-fi drama and did Troy instead.

Heathers
Auditioned for the role of J.D., but the producer and director thought he was too sweet looking for the dark character.

The Legend of Bagger Vance
Turned down the role of Junuh.

A Simple Plan
According to Vanity Fair, Pitt was offered the lead role but passed because he did not want to do another depressing story after Interview with the Vampire and Legends of the Fall.

Snatch
He was going to play Turkish but took the part of Mickey the Pikey instead.

State of Play
The actor withdrew from the production because he was not happy with the screenplay.

The Thin Red Line
He was auditioned for the role of Pvt Witt.

True Romance
Brad Pitt states in the DVD commentary that he was originally offered a "much bigger part" (presumably Clarence) but decided to take the role of the stoner Floyd instead.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (3182 ratings) 8.7  IMDB Rating
6. Johnny Depp
Backdraft
Turned down the role of Brian McCaffrey.

Dracula
Francis Ford Coppola's first choice for Jonathan Harker. The idea was voided by the studio.

Ferris Bueller's Day Off
During his interview on "Inside the Actors Studio" Johnny Depp said that he was offered the part of Ferris Bueller but was unavailable for it. He also said that Matthew did a great job with the role.

Interview with the Vampire
Turned down the lead role of Lestat.

Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events
Johnny Depp was attached to play Count Olaf when Tim Burton was attached to direct. When Burton left, Depp left as well.

The Rainmaker
According to an interview with Francis Ford Coppola, Johnny Depp was his first choice for the lead but was refused by the studio as he wasn't a big enough name at the time.

Speed
Turned down the role of Jack.

Thelma and Louise
Turned down the role of the hitchhiker.

Titanic
In a phone interview on the Howard Stern show, Johnny Depp would not say which films he has turned down, but Howard Stern reportedly got him to admit that he "labored" through the Titanic script.

X-Men
Turned down the role of Wolverine.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1761 ratings) 8.2  IMDB Rating
7. Christian Bale
Batman Forever
Bale auditioned to play Robin.

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl
He was refused for the role of Will Turner.

The Rules of Attraction
Bale did not want to reprise the role of Patrick Bateman from American Psycho. Casper Van Dien was cast as Patrick, but the scenes were deleted.

Three Kings
In a Charlie Rose interview, David O. Russell explains he already cast his friend Spike Jonze in a part, but met with Christian Bale to please the studio.

Titanic
He auditioned for the role of Jack, but James Cameron didn't want two British actors playing the lead roles of two Americans.

W.
Director Oliver Stone said in an interview that Bale was the first choice for the role of unpopular President George Bush. Bale underwent complicated prosthetics tests before coming to believe that he could not do the role.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1995 ratings) 7.4  IMDB Rating
8. Angelina Jolie
Alien: Resurrection
Jolie was refused for the role of Call.

Charlie's Angels
She said in an interview that she chose not to be in this film.

Chicago
Auditioned for the role of Velma Kelly.

Titanic
Auditioned for the role of Rose.

Unfaithful
Auditioned for the role of Connie.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1495 ratings) 8.5  IMDB Rating
9. Heath Ledger
Australia
He was attached to this film, but dropped out to play The Joker in The Dark Knight.

The Boondock Saints
Ledger tried to get a part as one of the two brothers in the film, but they had too difficult a time finding another actor that looked similar enough to be his brother.

Crash
He was offered Ryan Phillipe's role but turned it down.

End of Days
He was refused for the role of Satan.

Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World
Ledger was in talks to join the film, presumably to play the part later taken by Paul Bettany.

Spider-Man
He was offered the role of Peter Parker/Spider-Man but declined because he didn't want to risk being typecast as a super-hero.

No Country for Old Men
Had been expected to star for director Joel and Ethan Coen, but dropped out of the film.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (794 ratings) 8.6  IMDB Rating
10. Marlon Brando
Child's Play
Signed to play one of the key roles but he quit when he realized that James Mason had the much better role.

The Defiant Ones
Was busy with another project and turned down the lead role.

The Egyptian
Was signed to star as Sinuhe, but he disliked the script and co-star Bella Darvi, so he pulled out of the project and was instead forced to play in Desiree without salary, for the same studio.

Equus
He was interested in playing Martin Dysart.

The Exorcist
The studio wanted Brando to play Father Merrin but Friedkin felt he was too well known.

The Godfather Part II
According to director Francis Ford Coppola, Marlon promised to show up for the flashback sequence as Don Vito Corleone, but the actor never showed up, so Coppola restaged the scene.

High Noon
Turned down the role of Will Kane.

Lawrence of Arabia
Producer David Lean wanted Brando for the role of Lawrence, but he was already shooting Mutiny on the Bounty and the production schedule was extented many months and he had to refuse.

Mister Roberts
Turned down the role of Lt. Douglas A. Roberts.

Rebel Without a Cause
Producer Jerry Wald had Brando lined up for a movie version of Dr. Robert M. Lindner's non-fiction work about the analysis of a young criminal. The project was shelved, but later, reconstituted with another script concept and leading man.

Salvador
Turned down the the role of Richard Boyle.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1478 ratings) 8.2  IMDB Rating
11. Edward Norton
Abandon
Paramount offered a role to Edward Norton so he could fulfill a contractual obligation to the studio. He declined the role.

American Psycho
Turned down the lead role.

The Avengers
Edward Norton was originally set to reprise his role as Bruce Banner, but negotiations between him and Marvel Studios broke down and was replaced.

The Core
Paramount offered Edward Norton a role in the film so that he could fulfill again a contractual obligation to the studio. He declined.

Collateral
Turned down the part of Vincent.

Enchanted
Auditioned for the role of Robert Philip.

Hackers
Auditioned for a role.

Hart's War
Turned down the lead role of Lt. Hart.

Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil
Turned down the leading role.

Saving Private Ryan
Turned down the role of James Ryan.

Up Close & Personal
Auditioned for a role.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (211 ratings) 8.2  IMDB Rating
12. Kirk Douglas
Ben-Hur
Wanted the role of Ben Hur, but it was given to Charlton Heston and instead he was offered the role of Mesala, wich he refused.

Cat Ballou
Turned down the role of Kid Shelleen.

First Blood
Douglas was cast as Colonel Samuel Trautman but dropped out because the script was not true to the novel.

Seven Days in May
In the powerful political thriller, he had signed to play Gen. James Mattoon Scott, but thought Burt Lancaster would be better in the role. Instead he took the role of Col. Martin "Jiggs" Casey when Lancaster signed on.

Stalag 17
Turned down the role of Sgt. J.J. Sefton.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (555 ratings) 8.6  IMDB Rating
13. Daniel Day-Lewis
The English Patient
Turned down the role of Count Laszlo de Almasy, in the English Patient.

First Knight
Auditioned for the lead role.

Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles
He was reportedly the first choice to play Lestat. Some sources say he was actually cast, then dropped out.

The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
He was repeatedly offered the role of Aragorn, but he turned it down.

Shakespeare in Love
He was cast but dropped out weeks before shooting began.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (416 ratings) 8.6  IMDB Rating
14. Cary Grant
Arabesque
The role of Professor David Pollack in the elegant romantic spy thriller was written for Cary Grant who turned it down.

Claudia
Turned down the role feeling that the female role was the really important one.

The Birds
Alfred Hitchcock briefly considered Grant but decided against using the hugely expensive actor because he felt the birds and the Hitchcock name were the big attractions.

Dial M for Murder
Warner Bros. studios felt he was not right for the role of a man who arranged to have his wife murdered.

Dr. No
Turned down the role of James Bond.

Heaven Can Wait
Warren Beatty wanted Grant to play the part of Mr. Jordan, but Grant had been retired for years by then and refused the role.

I Confess
Turned down Alfred Hitchcock's offer to star him as a priest burdened by hearing the confession of a murderer.

It's a Wonderful Life
He was the top choice for It's a Wonderful Life when the film was still titled The Greatest Gift.

Let's Make Love
Turned down the role of Prof. Humbert Humbert.

The Man Who Came to Dinner
He was considered to play the acerbic critic Sheridan Whiteside who wreaks havoc in a midwestern home, when Howard Hawks was attached to direct.

Please Don't Eat the Daisies
Turned down the lead role.

Red River
Grant was director Howard Hawks's original choice for the role of gunslinger Cherry Valance but he declined and the part was diminished in the film.

Roman Holiday
Turned down the role of Joe Bradley.

Sabrina
He was scheduled to play the role of the workaholic millionaire "Linus" but pulled out of the project at the last minute.

The Third Man
He was Director Carol Reed's first choice to play Holly Martins. After he passed, the role was rewritten as an American.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (445 ratings) 8.8  IMDB Rating
15. James Stewart
Let's Make Love
Tthe role opposite Marilyn Monroe in this musical comedy directed by George Cukor.

My Darling Clementine
Turned down and opted for the role of George Bailey in It's a Wonderful Life.

North by Northwest
He wanted to play the role of Roger Thornhill, but Alfred Hitchcock opted for Cary Grant.

On Golden Pond
Turned down the role according to "James Stewart: A Biography" by Donald Dewey.

The Wild Bunch
Turned down the role of Pike Bishop.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (2257 ratings) 8  IMDB Rating
16. Tom Hanks
Field of Dreams
Turned down the role of Ray Kinsella.

Gangs of New York
Turned down the role of Bill Cutting, because he wanted a big salary.

The Shawshank Redemption
Turned down the role of Andy Dufresne due to scheduling conflicts with Forrest Gump.

Speed
He was offered the lead role, but declined.

Splash
Tom Hanks originally read for the part of Freddie before landing the lead role of Allen.

The Thin Red Line
Hanks declined the role because he had chosen to do Saving Private Ryan.

When Harry Met Sally...
Tom Hanks was originally offered the role of Harry but turned it down because it was too "lightweight.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1752 ratings) 7.4  IMDB Rating
17. Matt Damon
Avatar
He said, when discussing a new project with Neil Blomkamp (District 9's director) and asked if he will be an alien: "I'm not going to be a 10-foot-tall blue alien... though I did have a chance to be in that movie." Obviously referencing Avatar...

The Dark Knight
Damon turned down the role of Harvey Dent.

The Majestic
Turned down the leading role in director Frank Darabont's Capra-esque movie. He chose instead The Bourne Identity.

Paycheck
Damon was offered the part that went to Affleck, but turned it down because it was too similar to Jason Bourne. He recommended Affleck.

Pearl Harbor
Producers wanted to cast Matt in a lead role but couldn't get him.

Primal Fear
Auditioned for the role of Aaron Stampler.

To Die For
Auditioned for the key role of Jimmy Emmett in director Gus Van Sant's dark comedy.

Training Day
He was attached to the project at one time as rookie Jake Hoyt.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1186 ratings) 8.2  IMDB Rating
18. Kevin Spacey
Chicago
Spacey was in the running to play the lead role of Billy.

K-PAX
He was originally going to play Powell, but decided to take the role of Prot after Will Smith backed out.

Man on the Moon
Auditioned for the role of Andy Kaufman.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1313 ratings) 8  IMDB Rating
19. Liam Neeson
Asylum
He was originally considered for the part of Edgar Stark but it conflicted with his filming schedule. He was working on "Kinsey" at the time.

Dead Poets Society
Neeson was actually cast as John Keating at one point when Jeff Kanew was set to direct.

Exorcist: The Beginning
He was originally cast as Father Merrin, but dropped out.

True Romance
Turned down the role of Vincenzo Coccotti.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1502 ratings) 7.5  IMDB Rating
20. George Clooney
Down with Love
Turned down the role of Catcher Block.

Reservoir Dogs
Auditioned for the role of Mr. Blonde.

Return to Me
Turned down the lead role.

Sideways
Wanted to play the role of Jack, but the director preferred a much less well-known actor.

Thelma and Louise
Auditioned for the role of J.D.

World Trade Center
Turned down the lead role.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1957 ratings) 8.4  IMDB Rating
21. Morgan Freeman
Freedomland
Freeman turned down the lead role of Lorenzo Council.

The Legend of Bagger Vance
Robert Redford originally wanted Freeman to play Bagger Vance, but ultimately decided to cast the movie with younger actors.

Million Dollar Baby
He was originally considered for the lead role of Frankie Dunn, but chose instead to play Eddie "Scrap-Iron" Dupris.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1625 ratings) 8.2  IMDB Rating
22. Kate Winslet
Anna and the King
Turned down the the lead role.

Bridget Jones's Diary
Kate was refused for the lead role because they considered she was too young.

Daredevil
Turned down the role of Elektra.

House of Wax
Turned down the role of Paige Edwards.

In America
She was cast in the lead role, but finally droped out.

Shakespeare in Love
Turned down the lead role.

Stage Beauty
Turned down the the lead role.

Unfaithful
Turned down the the lead role.

X-Men
Turned down the role of Rogue.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (952 ratings) 7.7  IMDB Rating
23. Jodie Foster
Adventures in Babysitting
Turned down the lead role.

Batman Returns
She was in consideration for the role of Catwoman, but dropped out to do Little Man Tate.

The Blue Lagoon
Auditioned for the role of Emmeline

Blue Velvet
Turned down the role of Dorothy Valens.

Chicago
Auditioned to play Roxie Hart.

Conspiracy Theory
Turned down the lead role of Alice.

Double Jeopardy
Had the lead but dropped out due to pregnancy.

Gangs of New York
Was one of the several actresses for the role of Jenny Everdeane, because the film was in development for over 20 years.

The Handmaid's Tale
Turned down the lead role.

Hannibal
Foster refused to reprise her Oscar-winning role of Clarice Starling due to concerns about how the character was written this time.

Knocked Up
She was supposed to play Debbie, but backed out at the last minute.

Manhattan
Turned down the role of Tracy.

Pretty in Pink
Foster wanted the role of Andie, but director John Hughes turned her down.

Scarface
urned down the role of Elvira Hancock.

The Siege
Turned down the role played by Annette Bening.

Six Days Seven Nights
Auditioned for the role of Robin Monroe.

Sleepless in Seattle
Foster turned down the lead female role, because she claimed that the movie was "silly" and would be "unsuccessful". But the movie was a box office smash.

The Terminator
She was considered to play Sarah Connor, but was later discarded by James Cameron because she was too young for the part.

Thelma and Louise
Foster agreed to do the movie but pre-production took so long that she dropped out.

Unfaithful
Turned down the female lead role in order to replace Nicole Kidman in Panic Room.

Working Girl
Turned down the chance to appear in the film in order to play Sarah Tobias in The Accused.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1673 ratings) 7.6  IMDB Rating
24. Will Smith
K-PAX
Smith was originally set to play the role of Prot but he turned it down.

The Matrix
He turned down the lead role, admitting later that he had no regrets because "Keanu was brilliant as Neo."

Osmosis Jones
Will Smith's people said he expressed an interest in the part, but in the end he schedule didn't permit it.

Phone Booth
He turned down the role of Stu.

Snake Eyes
The role of Commander Dunne was offered to Will Smith, but the studio thought he wanted too much money.

The Truth About Charlie
Smith was considered to play Joshua Peters but turned it down because he was still shooting Ali.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1152 ratings) 7.6  IMDB Rating
25. Jake Gyllenhaal
American Beauty
Auditioned for the role of Ricky Fitts.

The Dreamers
Jake was considered to play Matthew, but turned it down because of the explicit nature of the nude scenes.

The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
According to IMDb, Jake auditionned for the role of Frodo.

Moulin Rouge
Gyllenhaal auditioned for the part of Christian, but was ultimately refused because he looked too young to star opposite Nicole Kidman.

Spider-Man 2
He was offered the role after Tobey McGuire was injured; he was even screentested with a suit, according to a rumor.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1733 ratings) 7.5  IMDB Rating
26. Nicole Kidman
The Brave One
She was considered for the leading role, but she turned it down.

Cape Fear
Kidman lobbied for the role of the daughter but Scorsese preferred a younger actress.

Bridget Jones's Diary
Turned down the role of Bridget Jones.

Chicago
Turned down the role of Roxie.

The Constant Gardener
Director Fernando Meirelles thought she was too old for the part.

Emma
Turned down the lead role.

The Flintstones
She was up for the role of Sharon, but was beat out by Halle Berry.

The Forgotten
Kidman was looking to star in another suspense film after The Others, yet Julianne Moore got the part.

Forrest Gump
According to a 1995 interview, she refused a screen test for the role of Jenny.

Ghost
Auditioned for the role of Molly.

Good Will Hunting
She was in talks for the role of Skylar.

I Heart Huckabees
Did not play "Dawn Campbell" because of scheduling difficulties. Her close friend, and the director's first choice, Naomi Watts instead did the role.

In the Cut
Having developed the project with Jane Campion, Kidman pulled out of the lead role of Frannie because she was going through her famous divorce. She kept a producer credit.

Indecent Proposal
Turned down the lead role of Diana, which was supposedly written with her in mind.

Jurassic Park
Auditioned for the role of Ellie.

The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou
She was cast but had to back out of the project.

The Life of David Gale
Turned down the role of Bitsey Bloom.

Mr. & Mrs. Smith
She was actually cast in the lead role of Jane Smith but dropped out.

Panic Room
Kidman was set to play the lead role but had to drop out because of an injury from Moulin Rouge.

A Perfect Murder
Turned it down because she wanted too much money.

The Producers
Announced to play the curvaceous secretary/actress and Swede "Ulla," but she dropped out due to scheduling conflicts.

The Reader
She dropped the role of Hana Schmitz due to pregnancy.

Shakespeare in Love
Turned down the lead role.

Shattered
Auditioned for the lead role.

Six Days Seven Nights
Auditioned to play Robin Monroe.

Titanic
Declined the role of Rose DeWitt.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1348 ratings) 8.1  IMDB Rating
27. Charlize Theron
A Beautiful Mind
Auditioned for the role of Alicia.

Chicago
Actually had the role of Roxie but lost it when there was a change in directors.

Tomb Raider
She was refused for the lead role.

Legally Blonde
Turned down the lead role.

Pearl Harbor
She left the film in order to shoot Sweet November.

Showgirls
Auditioned for the lead role of Nomi Malone.

Sweet Home Alabama
Charlize was originally set to play the lead but opted to do Trapped instead.

Titanic
She read for the part of Rose.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (6 ratings) 8.2  IMDB Rating
28. Russel Crowe
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Turned down the role of Aragon because 3 movies was too big of a commitment. He did A Beautiful Mind instead.

The Matrix
Turned down the role of Morpheus.

Shakespeare in Love
Crowe has stated that he was offered the part by Harvey Weinstein if he would sign on for a package deal of 4 films. Crowe refused but continued to lobby for the part of Shakespeare.

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
He was considered for the title role when Sam Mendes was attached to direct a film of the Stephen Sondheim Broadway musical.

Average listal rating (2172 ratings) 7.6  IMDB Rating
29. Bruce Willis
Burglar
He was originally offered the role of Bernie. The character was later changed to a woman.

Fatal Attraction
He was considered to play the lead role but opted to do Die Hard.

Ghost
Turned down the lead role of Sam Wheat.

Ocean's Eleven
Turned down a role.

Once Upon a Time in Mexico
Turned down the role of Sands.

Police Academy
Auditioned for the role of Cadet Carey Mahoney.

Speed
Turned down the the lead role.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (2016 ratings) 6.5  IMDB Rating
30. Tom Cruise
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
He was attached as the lead in the 90s, when Steven Spielberg was set to direct.

Donnie Brasco
Cruise was originally cast as Donnie Brasco but had to back out because production was pushed back.

Enemy of the State
He turned down the role of Robert Clayton because he was still working on Eyes Wide Shut.

Footloose
Set to play the lead role, but his schedule on All The Right Moves prevented him from accepting it.

I Am Legend
According to the Toledo Blade, Tom Cruise turn down the lead role.

Judgment Night
Emilio Estevez was far down the list of actors for the role of Frank Wyatt. A trade paper story explained that the studio's despiration led to Estevez taking a much higher-than-expected payday. Actors who passed included Tom Cruise.

Queen of the Damned
He decided not to return to the role of Lestat.

Rumble Fish
He turned down the lead role in order to do Risky Business instead.

Salt
Backed out of doing the espionage thriller, the script for which was originally titled "Edwin A. Salt".

Speed
He was offered the lead role but declined.

Starman
The studio wanted Tom Cruise for the lead. But when Karen Allen was cast, John Carpenter preferred an actor closer to her age. He didn't want a big star for the lead.

Wall Street
Wanted the role of Bud Fox but didn't get it.

Without Limits
He was originally considered for Steve Prefontaine but turned it down saying he was too old.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1031 ratings) 8.1  IMDB Rating
31. Sean Connery
The Adventures of Baron Munchausen
Connery was signed for the part of King of the Moon but budget troubles forced Terry Gilliam to cut great portions of the moon sequence. With his role diminished, Connery left the project.

Die Hard: With a Vengeance
Turned down the role of Simon Gruber due to the diabolical nature of the character.

First Knight
Auditioned for the lead role.

Dressed to Kill
Turned down the role of Robert Elliot due to prior commitment.

The English Patient
He was interested in playing the role of Caravaggio, but had schedule conflicts that couldn't be worked out.

In the Line of Fire
Turned down the role of Frank Horrigan.

Jurassic Park
Turned down the role of John Hammond.

Live and Let Die
Turned down the role of James Bond.

The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Turned down the role of Gandalf. He said in an interview that he "didn't understand it" and therefore didn't want to spend 18 months on the project.

The Matrix
Connery has publicly stated he was offered a role in the Matrix (although many people belive it was actually The Architect in The Matrix Reloaded). He turned down the role saying he couldn't understand the script. Years later, he said that he chose to do The League of Extraordinary Gentleman (despite not understanding the project) because he regretted turning both The Matrix and Lord of the Rings down.

Pretty Woman
Turned down the role of Edward Lewis.

Runaway Jury
Connery was attached to play Rankin Fitch but later dropped out.

The Thomas Crown Affair
Offered the role of Thomas Crown but declined. Connery later regretted his decision.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (919 ratings) 8.1  IMDB Rating
32. Denzel Washington
Dreamgirls
Turned down the role of Curtis Taylor Jr. because he can't sing.

I, Robot
Said in an interview that he was approached to play the lead.

Kiss the Girls
Washington was cast as Alex Cross but backed out due to scheduling problem.

Mr. 3000
He was offered the part of Stan Ross but turned it down and recommended comedian Bernie Mac.

Se7en
Washington was director David Fincher's first choice to play Det. David Mills but he passed because he thought the film would be too dark.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1429 ratings) 7.3  IMDB Rating
33. Uma Thurman
As Good as It Gets
She was considered for the role of Carol Connelly, but the producers turned her down because she was too young.

The Bonfire of the Vanities
Auditioned for the role of Maria Ruskin.

Elizabeth
Turned down the lead role.

Enchanted
Was offered the role of Giselle, but turned it down in order to do another projects.

How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
She was refused for the role of Andie Anderson.

I Know What You Did Last Summer
Turned down the role of Julie James.

Jurassic Park
Auditioned for the role of Ellie.

Tomb Raider
Turned down the role of Lara Croft.

The Lord of The Rings: The Fellowship of The Ring
Peter Jackson wanted to cast Thurman as Arwen, but the actress pulled out due to pregnancy, and was replaced with Liv Tyler.

Pretty Woman
Auditioned for the role of Vivian.

The Princess Bride
Auditioned for the role of Buttercup.

Pulp Fiction
Director Quentin Tarantino originally had Uma in mind to play Honey Bunny, but decided she was better suited to play Mia Wallace after their first meeting.

Taxi
Auditioned for the role of Lt. Marta Robbins.

Titanic
Auditioned for the role of Rose.

Wuthering Heights
Auditioned for the role Cathy.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1614 ratings) 7.7  IMDB Rating
34. Harrison Ford
Alien
Turned down the role of Dallas.

Cape Fear
Auditioned for the role of Sam Bowden.

A History of Violence
Turned down the leading role.

The Hunt for Red October
Turned down the role of Jack Ryan.

JFK
Turned down the role of Jim Garrison.

Jurassic Park
Turned down the role of Dr. Alan Grant.

Kinsey
Turned down the role of Alfred Kinsey.

Making Love
When 1982's Making Love was cast, top hollywood actors Harrison Ford, Michael Douglas and Richard Gere allegedly turned down the male lead, afraid of being linked to a romantic gay drama.

The Mirror Has Two Faces
Turned down the role of Gregory Larkin.

Misery
Turned down the lead role.

The Patriot
Turned down the lead role.

Proof of Life
Turned down the lead role.

Schindler's List
Turned down the role of Oskar Schindler.

Syriana
Was considered for the role Rob Barnes. He said in an interview that this was one of the few roles he regretted not taking.

Terms of Endearment
Turned down the role of Garrett Breedlove.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1363 ratings) 8.6  IMDB Rating
35. Anthony Hopkins
Batman Begins
He turned down the role of Alfred.

The Brothers Grimm
Hopkins was actually cast but he backed out.

Superman Returns
Signed on to play Jor-El when Brett Ratner was directing; left the project when Ratner left.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (1613 ratings) 6.7  IMDB Rating
36. Julia Roberts
Basic Instinct
Turned down the role of Catherine Tramell.

Blink
Turned down the role of Emma Brody.

Darkman
Was close to star as Julie Hastings but after she won the role of Vivian in Pretty Woman she left the project.

The Godfather Part III
Turned down the role of Mary Corleone due to scheduling conflicts

Infamous
She was interested in the Harper Lee role, but she became pregnant before the start of production.

Intolerable Cruelty
Turned down for the role of Marylin Rexroth.

Jurassic Park
Auditioned for the role of Ellie.

Shakespeare in Love
Turned down the lead role.

Six Days Seven Nights
Auditioned for the role of Robin Monroe.

Sleepless in Seattle
Turned down the role of Annie.

Sliver
She dropped out from the lead role due to scheduling conflicts.

Straight Talk
Turned down the role of Janice.

True Romance
Tony Scott spent a year searching for the right actress to play Alabama Whitman. He considered and rejected Bridget Fonda, Diane Lane, Kyra Sedgwick, and Julia Roberts.

While You Were Sleeping
Turned down the role of Lucy Moderatz.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (2229 ratings) 7.7  IMDB Rating
37. Jim Carrey
Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery
According to IMDB, Carrey was originally cast as Dr. Evil but had to leave the film because of a scheduling conflict with Liar Liar.

Bewitched
Turned down the role of Darrin because of prior commitments.

Dumb & Dumber
According to the DVD documentary, Jim Carrey was originally offered the Jeff Daniels part because it had more dialogue and depth. He chose the other role because he felt it had better jokes.

Edward Scissorhands
As a struggling actor, Jim Carrey reportedly auditioned more than once for the role of Edward Scissorhands.

Elf
The screenplay for Elf first emerged in 1993, and at that time, Jim Carrey was reportedly attached to play the lead.

Evan Almighty
He declined to repeat his role from Bruce Almighty.

Garfield
He turned down the role of Jon.

The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy
Jim Carrey was almost in place to play Zaphod Beeblebrox at the time of author Douglas Adams' death in 2001. It would take another four years to get the project made, with a new script, a new director, and ultimately a new cast.

Joe Somebody
He had a choice of making this movie or The Majestic. He chose The Majestic.

Over the Hedge
He was cast as RJ but had to drop out at the last minute.

Phone Booth
He was cast in the lead role but dropped out.

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl
He turned it down and chose Bruce Almighty instead.

Scooby-Doo
This movie had been in development since 1996, at that time Jim Carrey was attached to play Shaggy.

Superman Returns
Supposedly considered for the role of Brainiac when Tim Burton was set to direct. The script was later changed and the role was cut.

Toy Story
Pixar originally wanted Jim Carrey to play Buzz Lightyear but couldn't due to their low budget.

The Master of Disguise
He was the first choice for the lead role in this Adam Sandler produced film, but he turned it down.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Tim Burton considered casting Jim Carrey but decided against it.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (2413 ratings) 8.2  IMDB Rating
38. Natalie Portman
All the Pretty Horses
Turned down the lead role.

Almost Famous
According to director Cameron Crowe, Portman auditioned for the part of Penny.

Cold Mountain
Before being cast as Sara, Natalie Portman was considered for the role of Ada.

The Constant Gardener
She passed on the role of Tessa.

Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights
Turned down the lead role.

Gangs of New York
Auditioned for the role of Jenny.

Head in the Clouds
Portman turned down the lead role 2 weeks before pre-production because she didn't feel she was right for the part.

The Horse Whisperer
Turned down the role to do a stint on broadway instead.

House of Wax
She stated that she would never be in a horror movie. She was offered the lead role but turned it down.

The Ice Storm
Turned down the role of Wendy before it went to Christina Ricci.

King Kong
Natalie was considered for the role of Ann Darrow, but they later decided she was too young.

Le Divorce
Turned down the role of Isabel. She was already commited to Cold Mountain.

Little Women
She tried out for the movie but didn't get a part.

Lolita
Turned down the lead because she disagreed with the sexual content.

Wuthering Heights
She was originally signed on for the role but later left the project.

X-Men
Turned down the part of Rogue.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (557 ratings) 7.8  IMDB Rating
39. Gene Hackman
The Fugitive
He was refused for the role of Sam Gerard.

The Graduate
Hackman was originally cast as Mr. Robinson, Elaine's father, but was replaced after a few weeks when Mike Nichols decided he was too young for the part.

Misery
Turned down the lead role.

Network
Turned down the role of Howard Beale.

Ordinary People
Dropped out the role of Berger.

The Silence of the Lambs
Dropped out the role of Dr. Hannibal Lecter.
Coby's rating:

Average listal rating (567 ratings) 7.8  IMDB Rating
40. Robert Duvall
The Godfather Part III
He wanted too much money to reprise his role as Tom Hagen. The role was rewritten as B.J.

Jaws
Auditioned for the role of Chief Martin Brody.

W.
Turned down the role of Dick Cheney.
Coby's rating:


 

Some are rumors, some are not.

Related list:
Directors: Movies they refused or didn't get.

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Comments

Posted: 3 years, 5 months ago at Apr 7 19:49
Thank God Nicholson Turned Down The Role For Witness & Taxi Driver... I Mean, He Is A Legendary Actor But Robert De Niro & Harrison Ford Were Just Too Perfect For Those 2 Roles!
Posted: 3 years, 5 months ago at Apr 7 19:50
... And Imagine That If Harrison Ford Had ACTUALLY Accepted All Those Roles!

He Would Have Been Sitting On 7th Heaven Right Now!
Posted: 3 years, 5 months ago at Apr 7 22:26
Terrific Information - Great Research!
Posted: 3 years, 5 months ago at Apr 8 16:05
Natalie Portman as rogue? That wuld to be nice result
Posted: 3 years, 5 months ago at Apr 9 11:06
Bale auditioned to play Robin in Batman Forever. lol. the irony
Posted: 3 years, 5 months ago at Apr 9 13:04
This is interesting - I really enjoyed reading it!
Posted: 3 years, 5 months ago at Apr 27 22:49
Al pacino as Han Solo?!? Cant even imagine it. Great job with the list.
Posted: 3 years, 4 months ago at May 7 19:44
gene hackman as Hannibal, cant imagine. i also cant imagine anyone else doing Micheal Corleone in godfather than Pacino, but wow what a list! awesome job!
Posted: 2 years, 11 months ago at Oct 14 18:07
..but kate winslet WAS hanna in the reader
Posted: 2 years, 11 months ago at Oct 14 18:51
U're right, I fixed it. First she turned down the role as Hanna, but finally she accepted, so the information wasn't wrong, it was written just before she took the role, that's all.
Edit: 2 years, 11 months ago
Posted: 2 years, 7 months ago at Feb 13 7:04
Would you mind if I did one like this for TV shows?
Posted: 2 years, 6 months ago at Mar 17 12:28
Richard Gere replaced Al Pacino in Arbitrage. Great list!
Posted: 2 years, 4 months ago at May 6 9:49
I'm very happy some of those didn't get certain roles... :)
Posted: 2 years, 4 months ago at May 28 14:25
Kate Winslet as Rogue? That would've been terribly awkward.
And I feel horrible for Sean Connery having turned down two Epic roles for a movie that was not destined to be as great.
Posted: 2 years, 2 months ago at Jul 9 12:48
love it a lot
Posted: 2 years ago at Sep 10 0:39
An interesting list. It appears almost every leading man in Hollywood turned down Misery before James Caan accepted it.
Posted: 2 years ago at Sep 10 4:34
great list.
Posted: 2 years ago at Sep 15 14:21
Nice list!
Posted: 1 year, 11 months ago at Oct 10 17:47
Interesting list, appreciate the work that went into it.
Posted: 1 year, 10 months ago at Nov 29 11:01
Posted: 1 year, 9 months ago at Dec 16 1:14
Brad Pitt as Jason Bourne would've been freaking awesome!

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