Top 10 Almost Cast

Imagine if Danny Devito was supposed to play Batman instead of Penguin. That’s not on our top 10 almost cast list, but it would be pretty ridiculous. Now for the actual list:

  1. Will Smith was almost the one

Will Smith turned down the starring role of Neo in The Matrix – choosing instead to star in the film everyone remembers him for: Wild Wild West. He later admitted had he been the One he would have messed up the role because he was not mature enough.



  1. Adam Sandler almost killed Nazis

Quentin Tarantino asked Adam Sandler to play Donny Donowitz – aka The Bear Jew – in Inglorious Basterds but he was committed to Funny People at the time. So we got Eli Roth instead.




  1. Tim Roth was almost the Half Blood Prince

It seems weird to even suggest that anyone other than the late Alan Rickman could possibly be Severus Snape, but Mr Orange himself was a contender.



  1. Gwyneth Paltrow was almost drawn like a French girl

I know people who still believe that Kate Winslet and Leo DiCaprio are destined to be together. That would probably not be the case if Gwyneth was cast as Rose in James Cameron’s blockbuster Titanic.



  1. Emily Blunt was almost every female character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe

Ok, not EVERY character. But Emily Blunt was turned down the role of Natasha Romanoff, a.k.a. Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) while being strongly linked with Carol Danvers a.k.a Captain Marvel before Brie Larson was cast. She exclaims that the roles never came at the right time. Someday, Emily. Someday.



  1. John Travolta almost ate a box of chocolates

In 1994 John Travolta had to choose between Pulp Fiction and Forrest Gump. He chose the former – relaunching his career, but Forrest Gump got the Best Picture Oscar so you could say he would be winning either way. The part ultimately went to Tom Hanks who subsequently nailed it.



  1. Al Pacino almost shot first

Al Pacino was offered the part of Han Solo in Star Wars but turned it down because he “didn’t understand the script.”

Thankfully he knew what Mario Puzo and Francis Ford Coppola were going on about or his career would have been completely different.



  1. Matt Damon was almost blue

James Cameron is a director every actor wants to work with, including Matt Damon, who was offered the role of Jake Sully in the blockbuster hit Avatar but unfortunately had to turn it down because of scheduling conflicts.



  1. Tom Cruise was almost a genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist

Robert Downey Jr. IS Iron Man. We know this. But did you know Tom Cruise was considered for the role too?



  1. Nicolas Cage was almost IN EVERY SINGLE MOVIE EVER

Here is a list of SOME of the films that Nicolas Cage was in discussions to be a part of:

  • Superman – Failed Tim Burton Superman Project
  • John Bender – The Breakfast Club, which went to Judd Nelson
  • Tony Stark – Iron Man, which went to RDJ
  • Aragorn – Lord of the Rings, which went to Viggo Mortensen
  • Joel Goodsen – Risky Business, which went to Tom Cruise
  • Willy Wonka – Charlie & The Chocolate Factory, which went to Johnny Depp
  • Neo – The Matrix, which went to Keanu Reeves
  • Joel Barish – Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, which went to Jim Carrey
  • Francis Dolarhyde – Red Dragon , which went to Ralph Fiennes
  • Green Goblin – Spiderman, which went to Willem Dafoe

Is it possible to have both the best and worst agent of all time?




  1. We almost had a completely different group of Friends

  • Rachel was almost played by Elizabeth Berkley (Saved by the Bell)
  • Chandler was almost played by Jon Cryer (Two and a Half Men)
  • Monica was almost played by Leah Remini (King of Queens)
  • Joey was almost played by Hank Azaria (The Simpsons)
  • Ross was almost played by Eric McCormack (Will & Grace)
  • Phoebe was almost played by Ellen DeGeneres (Ellen)
  • Monica was almost Rachel! Courtney Cox auditioned for the role of Rachel and was first choice for the role but instead thought she’d be a better fit for Monica Gellar.


In an alternate universe these casting choices would have happened. Let’s let that sink in.

What your favourite almost cast moment? Hit us up in the comments below or tell us on Facebook and Twitter.

Love Podcasts? Check out out latest episode of the BTG MovieCast Podcast, where we talk about Noem My Skollie and the Deus Ex Machina phenomenon in Film & TV.

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Dean Ravell

Writer/director. Fascinated with all kinds of film and just wants to be part of the wonderful world of cinema.