It’s hard to imagine a world where Saif Ali Khan— not SRK— waits for Kajol to palat in DDLJ or Rachel McAdams— not Anne Hathaway— walks into work in the iconic Chanel thigh-high boots in The Devil Wears Prada— but believe it or not, these scenarios almost happened. From not accepting the offer or landing the part to leaving the role behind due to other commitments, there are a lot of reasons why certain movie castings do not work out— here are 10 that will leave you surprised:
Iconic Roles That Were Almost Played By Other Actors
1. Hannah Montana
Sweet niblets! The casting director of Hannah Montana, Lisa London, recently revealed that one of the final contenders for the teenage popstar role was none other than Gossip Girls’ Taylor Momsen. Jenny Humphrey living the best of both worlds-life? We’re going to need a moment to process that.
2. La La Land
Emma Stone’s role in La La Land was almost played by another Emma (Watson) alongside Miles Teller in place of Ryan Gosling! However, she turned it down because she’d already committed to playing Belle in Disney’s live-action Beauty and the Beast at the time.
3. Devil Wears Prada
Rachel McAdams was reportedly offered the role of Andy Sachs in The Devil Wears Prada three times before it went to Anne Hathaway. TBH I wouldn’t have minded seeing some Regina George energy up against Miranda Priestly.
4. Fifty Shades Of Grey
Emilia Clarke revealed in an actress roundtable interview that she turned down the role of Anastasia Steele after feeling pigeonholed by Game of Thrones nudity. “The last time that I was naked on camera on (Game of Thrones) was a long time ago, and yet it is the only question that I ever get asked because I am a woman,” she said. “I did a minimal amount and I’m pigeonholed for life, so me saying yes to (Fifty Shades), where the entire thing is about sensuality and sex and being naked and all of that stuff, I was just like, ‘No way am I going to voluntarily walk into that situation and then never be able to look someone in the eye and be like, ‘No, you can’t keep asking me this question.’”
Kate Winslet’s star-making role was initially offered to Gwyneth Paltrow who revealed that turning it down is a decision she regrets to this day. When it comes to the male lead, Matthew McConaughey reportedly auditioned for the role of Jack but didn’t land the part. “I went and read with Kate Winslet and it was not one of the auditions — they filmed it so it was like into screen test time. After we left, you know, it was one of those ones where they, like, followed me and when we got outside they were like, ‘That went great.’ I mean, kind of like hugs. I really thought it was going to happen. It did not,” he shared in a podcast.
6. Legally Blonde
We can’t ever picture anyone other than Reese Witherspoon playing our favourite Gemini vegetarian Elle Woods but rumour has it that actress Christina Applegate was considered for the role. Opening about it on a talk show Christina said, “The story’s been out there but I wasn’t actually offered it, the script came to me,” said Applegate. “But at that time, I had just gotten off of Married with Children and I felt like it was too close to what I had just been doing and I was very interested in removing myself from that.”
7. Kaho Na Pyaar Hai
Kareena Kapoor was all set to make her Bollywood debut with Kaho Naa Pyaar Hai opposite Hrithik Roshan but eventually opted out due to creative differences between the director Rakesh Roshan and her mother Babita. If you look closely, you’ll even find a scene with Kareena in the final cut of the film!
8. Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge
You may have heard that Aditya Chopra initially wanted Tom Cruise to play Raj Malhotra but what you may not know is that before Shah Rukh Khan landed the role, Saif was considered for the part but he turned it down.
9. Kal Ho Na Ho
Karan Johar’s biography reveals that Kareena was the first choice for Naina’s character in Kal Ho Na Ho but things didn’t work out as planned. “She (Kareena) asked for too much money and we had some kind of a fallout at that time. Mujhse Dosti Karoge! had just released, directed by Kunal Kohli. She said, ‘Aditya Chopra’s assistant Kunal Kohli has made this flop, so Karan Johar’s assistant, Nikhil Advani is not to be trusted either,” the book reads.
Before Shah Rukh Khan, Ashutosh Gowariker had approached Hrithik for Swades but the actor turned down the offer. Hrithik later revealed in an interview that he didn’t think he could justify the role since he couldn’t quite see the director’s vision of the film.
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