What casting might have changed everything? Famous celebrities, acting legends, a better fit? Any failed catch bother you? Are you aware Squirm (1976) almost cast Martin Sheen, Kim Basinger, and Sylvester Stallone as the main characters? Basinger calling out “Mr. Beardsley”? Is the right person what marks the good from the bad? Or has the train already left the station?
You can sort of tell that the original plans for Caddyshack 2 involved getting the actors to reprise their roles from the first, but that mostly fell through, so you ended up with stuff like Dan Akroyd doing an impression of Bill Murray’s character and fulfilling the same role.
Patton Oswalt brought this up in a standup routine of his, but… Nick Nolte as Han Solo.
The ripple effects of such a change would have been immense.
I remember hearing an interview where Thomas Jane talked about turning down a chance at the role of Walter White (Breaking Bad) because he was more interested in pursuing film work than television work. When his roles in ‘Killshot’ and direct-to-video ‘Mutant Chronicles’ didn’t wind up doing much for him, he decided that TV wasn’t so bad after-all and did three seasons of the HBO series ‘Hung’.
Yaphet Kotto as Picard? Denise Crosby as Troi? Whoa, Nellie!
Jonny Lee Miller as grown-up Anakin Skywalker
I think she would have been better as Troi.
Billy Idol was going to play the T-1000 in Terminator 2, until he was badly injured in a motorcycle accident. That would have been quite interesting, but I’m definitely not complaining about getting the entire career of Robert Patrick.
This one blew my mind when I learned it a few years ago: the part of Sallah (John Rhys-Davies) in Raiders of the Lost Ark was originally written for Danny DeVito. Can you imagine?
Sometimes “casting that almost happened” is more like “bullet dodged!”
(Plus, you can still watch Danny DeVito in a very similar role in Romancing the Stone, a pretty good movie that’s a much better fit for his particular talents, IMO.)
I think you’re right. Denise is fierce. Her Troi would be mouthy and not as complacent. Flipside the romance with Riker would curdle and I don’t sense the chemistry.
We also came close to getting Matthew Broderick as Walter White. His role as a genial but sinister father in Bojack Horseman gives an idea what that might have been like.
The Godfather has some fascinating and/or horrifying possibilities, who auditioned or were even outright approached for the roles, including quite a few little-known actors at the time who exploded later (also note the occasional repeated names).
Vito: Frank Sinatra, Orson Welles, Ernest Borgnine, Burt Lancaster, Laurence Olivier, Anthony Quinn, Edward G. Robinson, Paul Scofield, George C. Scott, Danny Thomas
Michael: Robert Redford, Ryan O’Neal, Warren Beatty, Jack Nicholson, Dustin Hoffman, David Carradine, Martin Sheen, Dean Stockwell
Sonny: Anthony Perkins, Burt Reynolds, John Saxon
Tom Hagen: Bruce Dern, Steve McQueen, Paul Newman, Jack Nicholson, Martin Sheen, Dean Stockwell, Robert Vaughn, John Cassavettes, Peter Falk, Elvis Presley
Kay: Karen Black, Genevieve Bujold, Julie Christie, Mia Farrow, Cybil Shepard
Having seen some of these people in MST episodes, I have to say that I can’t imagine. Roy Thinnes as Picard? Ben Murphy as Ryker? That’s a mind trip right there. Wesley Snipes as Geordi? No way.
But then, Julia Nickson as Tasha Yar would have been interesting. I don’t have anything against Denise Crosby in the role, but I wonder what would have happened with Julia Nickson. I always liked her.
I also find it interesting that Brent Spiner is not on the list of options for the role of Data.
Ben Murphy’s Riker would have called the Ferengi a bunch of turkeys and told the Romulans to be mellow and then half of TNG’s plots would have never happened.
According to the Fifty Year Mission The Complete, Uncensored, Unauthorized Oral History of Star Trek, they also looked at Marina Sirtis for Tasha. The role was inspired by Aliens, and they were looking for a take on Vasquez.
Sirtis as Yar, I could see some of the tone of voice she used later voicing Demona on Gargoyles popping in.
Unrelated to Trek, there was this:
Although the studio wasn’t considering it, Wallace Shawn apparently spent every moment of his time playing Vizzini in The Princess Bride, certain that he was going be replaced by Danny DeVito.
Nobody could convince him otherwise, try as they might. From Cary Elwes’ book, As you wish.
I love Danny DeVito, but Wallace Shawn was born to play Vizzini.
Vanessa Angel was originally going to be Xena, Warrior Princess, but she got sick and then-unknown Lucy Lawless was brought in basically as an emergency replacement.
I think Lucy’s guardian angel is also her agent.
Not sure how true this is, because I read it on a buzzfeed article but, Tobey Maguire and Kirstin Dunst in Final Destination as Alex and Clear, (irl Alex and Clear were played by Devon Sawa and Ali Larter)
Loosely related is that at one point Jake Gyllenhaal was going to replace Tobey Maguire in Spider-Man 2… (I guess that’s technically a Recast that almost happened, but I feel like they may have referenced that by having the theme for Jake’s Mysterio be somewhat like the theme from the Rami films…)
( I was going to insert the My back gif here, because the reason for the almost recast was that tobey broke his back, but I couldn’t find it on the gif button)
Of course there’s the (in)famous quote about OJ as the Terminator…
One that I’m not entirely clear on how far it got was a supposed Beatles Lord of the Rings movie…
and of course there’s the Other Marty…although I don’t know much about eric stoltz’ actual filmography, to me he’s just “the Guy who was going to Be Marty because they couldn’t get Michael J Fox, But then Michael J. Fox was avalible so they threw Eric out, and Eric was kind of a jerk about it, and they forgot to reshoot a few seconds so he’s still in the movie sort of”