The actors who campaigned to land their dream roles
For most actors, the process of being cast in a movie is complicated. There are taped auditions, casting calls, line readings, screen tests, and many hours of waiting on the phone to see if that dream role will be yours. For some, however, things have been a bit more straightforward.
The connected world has made it easier than ever to spread your message, and some have taken to their platform to make their intentions about a franchise or role they’d like to participate in known.
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We’ve rounded up some of the most notable instances of a star publicly pursuing a role and winning, as well as some failed attempts.
Success: Helen Mirren – fast furious franchise (2017–present)
Known for high-profile roles such as her Oscar-winning role in The QueenDame Helen Mirren might not be the name you think of for a fast-paced action franchise, but apparently the acting legend was a fan.
“Things are exploding all around you, it’s an incredible pleasure,” she told Graham Norton in 2016 of making action movies. “That with cars, that would be my dream come true,” she added.
Apparently Vin Diesel heard her wish and she was cast in 2017 Fast and Furious 8, and was part of three films in the franchise as Magdalene, the mother of Jason Statham’s Deckard Shaw.
Failure: Sean Young – Return of Batman (1992)
TV exposure isn’t always successful, as Sean Young discovered ahead of filming Return of Batman. blade runner the Young star was originally cast as Vicky Vale in 1989 Batmanbut was replaced by Kim Basinger following a riding accident.
Undeterred, Young appeared “in character” as Catwoman on The Joan Rivers Show in 1991 to plead his case. Unfortunately for her, Michelle Pfeiffer won the role.
Achievement: Simu Liu – Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021)
One of Marvel’s latest heroes has used a very modern way to get their attention. When Shang Chi was announced in 2018, Simu Liu – then a popular TV actor on shows like Kim’s Convenience — tweeted bluntly “Okay, Marvel, are we going to talk or what? »
Despite the apparent confidence, even the actor himself was surprised when he was cast, responding to his own tweet eight months later with “well s***.”
Failure: Michael Jackson – To win over (1990)
Many rumors circulate around the implication of Michael Jackson in the film of Steven Spielberg. Peter Pan sequel, but the late King of Pop was no doubt keen on playing the role of Peter Pan in To win over.
Jackson, who named his home Neverland Ranch after the story by JM Barrie, saw an ideal chance to live out his dream with Spielberg, then Hollywood’s hottest director.
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However, the filmmaker recalls that the couple separated due to the direction of the film, where Peter would be an adult.
“Michael understood at that moment that it was not the same Peter Pan he wanted to do,” Spielberg told EW in 2011.
Success: Samuel L Jackson – star wars prequels (1999-2005)
Samuel L Jackson’s Jedi Knight Mace Windu was an integral part of the star wars prequel trilogy, but it might not have happened without a TV show. In 1996, the pulp Fiction the star appeared on a British chat show TFI Friday and, when asked by host Chris Evans (not that one) what his dream role would be, Jackson replied that he would do “anything” to appear in upcoming George Lucas movies.
Someone at Lucasfilm saw the interview, and the rest is history.
Failure: Tyrese Gibson – Django Unchained (2012)
the fast furious actor went so far as to film his own audition tape for Quentin Tarantino’s 2012 western Django Unchained, bookending the video with quotes indicating how he wanted to show another side of his repertoire.
Despite a committed performance that drew praise when leaked online, the role ultimately went to Jamie Foxx.
Hit: Ryan Reynolds – dead Pool (2017–present)
Sometimes you just have to let people decide. He played an alternate version of the character in the 2009 setting X-Men Origins: Wolverinebut Ryan Reynolds had been pushing for a solo Deadpool movie since 2004 when a studio exec told him about his performance in Blade Trinity reminded him of Wade Wilson.
A decade later, test footage featuring the actor as the character leaked online sparked a huge outpouring of support that culminated in the 2016 hit. dead Pool. Was it Reynolds who leaked the footage? “I’m 70% sure it wasn’t me,” he teased chat show host Jimmy Fallon in 2016, revealing he’d discussed the leak in the past.
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Whether or not he’s the culprit, a 12-year campaign to bring justice to the character paid off thanks to fan enthusiasm and two minutes of mayhem. He’s set to continue the role in the MCU in the future, with The Adam Project director Shawn Levy at the helm.
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