Famous Actors Who Were Cut From Hit Movies
Ideally, when you go into a job, you hope all of your work is used and appreciated. But things don’t always go according to plan. You might work really hard on a project, but in the end, none of your work gets used. At least you still get a paycheck, right?
Well, the same thing goes for actors. Many actors shoot scenes for movies, only to see those scenes not make the final cut in the end. You might think that this only happens to lesser known actors. But in reality, it also happens to famous actors — Oscar winners included.
There are many classic movies and big blockbusters out there that have ended up cutting out well-known actors due to time constraints or storyline reasons. Luckily, you can still find most of these deleted scenes online, or see them in a DVD’s special features. But you still can’t help but wonder, what if? So which famous actors were left on the cutting room floor? Here are 10 actors who saw their scenes edited out of existence.
1. Harrison Ford in E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
This classic movie about Elliot (Henry Thomas) helping an alien get back home did pretty well on its own. But it was originally supposed to have a little more star power behind it. Harrison Ford plays Elliot’s principal, and in one deleted scene, he scolds Elliot for freeing frogs that were supposed to be dissected. The scene can be found on YouTube, but Ford was completely cut due to time constraints.
Of course, it might be bittersweet for Harrison Ford, but young Henry Thomas will never forget the legend. He told Entertainment Weekly, “When I met Steven, the first thing out of my mouth was, I think, ‘I love Raiders of the Lost Ark,’ and my hero was Harrison Ford and I basically was just excited to meet Steven in hopes that I would meet Harrison Ford.” Of course he did get to and it was a huge moment for him.
2. Paul Rudd in Bridesmaids
In this film, Kristen Wiig found her funny love interest in Rhodes, played by Chris O’Dowd. But she was supposed to go on other dates with more suitors. One of those suitors was played by Paul Rudd, who takes her on a date at a skating rink. Of course, things don’t go well since he’s pretty clumsy (and angry). The scene didn’t make the cut, however, you can find it online.
“We had so much fun the days he was there and [cutting him] was so incredibly painful,” Wiig told Entertainment Weekly. “Our first cut was so long. It’s the hardest thing to have to cut stuff.”
3. Tobey Maguire in Life of Pi
This Oscar-winning movie was originally supposed to have this actor in the film, but was cut for a surprising reason. Most actors have been erased from films due to timing. However Ang Lee decided that Tobey Maguire was just too famous to keep in the film. After he cut out the famous star he replaced him with Rafe Spall.
“I love Tobey. But it’s a small part,” said Lee according to USA Today. “So when it’s a movie star sitting there, it captures attention. It didn’t really work out.” I guess this means star power isn’t everything in the movie industry.
4. Sienna Miller in Black Mass
The actress has recently made headlines for being cut out of the newest Johnny Depp and Benedict Cumberbatch film. The movie tells the real story of Whitey Bulger, the criminal brother of a state senator. Miller was supposed to play his girlfriend, Catherine Greig, but she was completely nixed from the film.
“It came down to narrative choices,” explained director, Scott Copper to The Boston Globe. He believed Bulger’s later years that involved her character were “less dramatic.” It’s a shame, since the movie is bound to get some Oscar buzz. Also, the actress talked about working hard on perfecting her Boston accent and watching countless movies set in South Boston to prepare for the role.
5. Kevin Costner in The Big Chill
This movie about seven college friends reuniting after the death of their friend, Alex, was also supposed to include this actor. The original opening scene featured a flashback of Alex alive and played by Costner.
“My experience has been a lot of the time working with directors, especially writer directors, there will be one or two scenes that they tell you are key,” explained John Bailey to Filmmaker Magazine. “In Larry’s case the flashback ‘this is why I wrote the script.’ Almost invariably I can tell you the scene that a director is in love with the most, is the first scene that should go on the floor. Because it’s explicit; it already tells you what the movie is about.”
6. La Toya Jackson in Bruno
This Sacha Baron Cohen comedy originally featured a scene in which he pranks La Toya. In the scene, the actor gets her to eat sushi off of an obese naked man’s body. However, the scene was cut before it premiered at Mann’s Chinese Theater. It was then later put on the DVD as an extra.
“Out of respect for the Jackson family, the filmmakers have decided to remove a small scene involving La Toya Jackson,” read a statement from Universal.
7. Andy Garcia in Dangerous Minds
This movie stars Michelle Pfeiffer as an ex-Marine who starts teaching in an inner city school. So where did Andy Garcia come in? Well, if his scenes were left untouched, we would have seen him play Pfeiffer’s love interest. His character was actually written in after Pfeiffer asked for it, but even Garcia didn’t think it felt right.
“I read the script and I said to her, ‘You really don’t need [a love interest].'” He told Blog Talk Radio. “But, you know, I did cash the check.”
8. Ellen Pompeo in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
When the actress booked this gig, it was before Grey’s Anatomy. She went in to play Jim Carrey’s ex-girlfriend, but didn’t make the final cut. You can find her scene on YouTube arguing with Carrey’s character while having lunch. Although it didn’t work out, the opportunity boosted her confidence.
“I got completely cut out of [Eternal Sunshine] but got so much affirmation to be hired,” Pompeo told Allure.
9. Uma Thurman in Savages
Blake Lively wasn’t supposed to be the only blonde in this action movie. Thurman had several scenes playing Lively’s mother. Her scenes were mostly intended to explain Lively’s history of relationships. However, the backstory of her mother was completely left behind for the final cut.
“Her mom is off with her eight different husbands,” Blake Lively explained according to MovieLine. “It’s a shame that you will miss that, in the movie. It was really beautiful stuff with Uma Thurman, and I think it really told a lot more of how a girl could end up this way. She’s the modern girl. Divorces are so much more common now than they were.”
10. Chris Cooper in The Ring
Cooper is another actor who was cut from the opening scene of a film. Originally, he was supposed to play a child murderer being interviewed by Naomi Watts in the opening scene. Then, at the end, Watts would curse the videotape and give him a copy. Although audiences at test screenings weren’t fans of the last scene, they did want to see more of Cooper. Instead, the filmmakers decided to cut Cooper’s scenes entirely from the film.
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