Outrageous Reasons Why Stars Were Denied Roles
Every actor has to deal with rejection from time to time. Trying to land gigs can be tough, as stars can miss out on roles for a variety of reasons. Most actors are denied for legit reasons, but every once in awhile, some rejections are mean or downright nasty. To no surprise, Hollywood has some awful people in charge, and here are the most outrageous reasons why they’ve denied stars acting roles.
Olivia Wilde – Too old for The Wolf of Wall Street
Hollywood apparently doesn’t like its women getting older, which unfortunately happens to everyone. Accusations of ageism have been thrown around for decades, and it’s pretty hard to deny them. The Wolf of Wall Street tells the story of Jordan Belfort, a man who made of bunch of money by doing lots of illegal stuff. Olivia Wilde auditioned for the part of Belfort’s wife (in the movie, he cheats on his first wife and then marries his mistress, but it’s unclear which wife role she auditioned for).
Wilde, who was 29 at the time, told Howard Stern (via Entertainment Weekly) that she was considered too old to play the love interest of Leonardo DiCaprio, who was in his late 30s. If this film was going for “age accuracy,” then Leo shouldn’t have even gotten the lead role. Jordan Belfort was in his late twenties to early thirties throughout the events of the movie. Maybe casting Leo used up all of the age discrepancy allowance the film had?
Heather Matarazzo – ‘Unf***able’ for The Princess Diaries
The Princess Diaries is a harmless movie about an awkward girl who discovers that she’s actually a princess. This Disney film was made for young girls, and its humor is definitely aimed in that direction. The film co-stars Heather Matarazzo, an actress who’s appeared in a handful of acclaimed movies. She’s also the girl who was hung upside and drained of blood during the only memorable scene in Hostel: Part II.
Matarazzo’s been acting since she was a child. She once blogged about one of her most painful experiences in the business—and it wasn’t Hostel. When she was 19, she was attached to star in a movie that was finally going into production after two years. She assumed that she was going to be playing the lead, but was told that she’d actually be playing one of the supporting roles. According to a blog she wrote, the reason was because the producers considered her “unf**kable.” Matarazzo hasn’t confirmed which movie this was, but The Princess Diaries is the big movie that really fits her stated timeline in the blog (the lead role was given to Anne Hathaway). If it is, shame on Disney’s producers.
Chris Pratt – Didn’t have the ‘it factor’ for Star Trek
The last couple of years have been really good for Chris Pratt. Starting with The Lego Movie, the actor led a string of successes at the box office, including Guardians of the Galaxy and Jurassic World. Pratt also built up a huge fan base by playing the lovable goofball Andy Dwyer on Parks and Recreation. It’s pretty undeniable that the guy is a star. Well, tell that to some Hollywood casting agent involved with the 2009 Star Trek reboot.
Pratt auditioned for the role of Captain Kirk, and based on his work in Guardians, he probably would have killed it. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly (via Cinema Blend), Pratt said was rejected for the role because apparently, he didn’t that “it factor.” It had nothing to do with his talent or abilities, just some random, undefinable thing that can’t be quantified in any way. For a guy without “it,” Pratt’s doing just fine.
Kane Hodder – Not tall enough for Freddy vs. Jason
To be honest, the killer in the Friday the 13th movies isn’t exactly the most complex acting role. Jason Voorhees doesn’t talk and wears a hockey mask. Basically, you just needed to be huge and menacing, which is why the role kept going around to different actors with each sequel—until Kane Hodder came along. He brought as much life as possible to Jason. Starting with Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood, he became the man behind the mask. When Freddy vs. Jason was announced, Hodder assumed he would once again get the role he played for the last 14 years. Hodder was beloved by fans, and even had a friendship with Robert Englund, the actor behind Freddy Krueger.
It came as a shock to everybody when it was announced that Hodder wouldn’t be returning for this epic crossover. In the series’ memoir, Crystal Lake Memories, we get flimsy reasons why someone else was put in Jason’s boots. First, Kane Hodder supposedly wasn’t the right size to play Jason, despite standing over 6 feet tall and towering over Robert Englund. The second reason was that Hodder’s eyes weren’t emotional enough for the story. Since Jason wears a mask, and only one eye is visible through it, the studio wanted someone who could express their feelings through just one eye. How much eye expression do you need for a slasher flick? Hodder speculates that they went with a lesser known actor to avoid having to pay him more. The worst part? Hodder was replaced by his stuntman and stunt coordinator in Friday the 13th Part VIII.
Melora Hardin – Too tall for Back to the Future
It’s fairly uncommon for actors to get cast in a lead role and then let go. It’s even rarer for that to happen once the cameras started rolling. That’s exactly what happened for Back to the Future, however. A lot of fans have heard the story about how Eric Stoltz was first cast as Marty McFly, only to be eventually replaced by Michael J. Fox a few weeks into filming. Stoltz was released because the producers didn’t think he was funny enough for the part, and Fox (the original choice for the role) finally agreed to do the part. While that might seem like a legitimate (if poorly timed) decision, what happened to Melora Hardin was much worse. She was originally cast to play Marty’s girlfriend, Jennifer.
While the producers were perfectly happy with her performance, she was told she was too tall to play Fox’s girlfriend. There are all kinds of camera trickery they could’ve done to hide the height differences between the two. Ultimately, Hardin was replaced by Claudia Wells, who didn’t even make it into the sequels. Marty should’ve just worn elevator shoes or something.