Payday Loans
Jodie Foster (1962-?)

 

  1. Tatum O’Neal, The Bad News Bears, 1975.    All set to be Amanda Whurlitzer when she ran to Taxi Driver. Kristy McNichol was asked next, and then Tatum, who had a little something the others did not. An Oscar.

  2. Carrie Fisher, Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope, 1976.

  3. Brooke Shields, Pretty Baby, 1977.      The Taxi Driver kid hooker was enough, thank you…! The subject was horrendous - a prostitute allowing her 12-year-old daughter’s virginity to be auctioned off in a brothel in the red-light Storyville district of New Orleans, circa 1917. Elegant French director Louis Malle saw 28 hopefuls and/or instant (parental) refusals for Violet. From Laura Dern aged 10 and future Sex And The City co-stars Cynthia Nixon, at 11, Sarah Jessica Parker, 12 (like Shields) and (the often too buxom) teenagers: Foster (due as Jane Fonda’s daughter), Melissa Sue Anderson, Rosanna Arquette, Linda Blair, Jamie Lee Curtis, Bridget Fonda, Jodie Foster, Mariel Hemingway, Helen Hunt, Anissa Jones (who tragically ODed at 18 before her audition), Diane Lane, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Kristy McNichol, Tatum O’Neal (Dad said no), Dana Plato (Mom said no), Michelle Pfeiffer, Ally Sheedy, Meg Tilly, Charlene Tilton… to seven twentysomethings. However, no make-up and soft lenses could make 12-year-olds out of Isabelle Adjani, Bo Derek, Carrie Fisher, Melanie Griffith, Amy Irving, Mary Steenburgen or Debra Winger.

  4.  Brooke Shields, Tilt, 1978.   Rudy Durand (co-writer and director) went with Shields, even though his backers had agreed to the higher-priced Foster. The film not released until 1981 on Showtime and NBC TV.

  5.  Mariel Hemingway, Manhattan, 1978. With his Chaplinesque eye for young flesh, Woody Allen wanted Foster for the girl he keeps trying to break up with. Hemingway won, said the wags, because she was younger! Actually, at 17, she was a year older. (Age difference between Woody and Mariel was 25 years). Three years earlier, Jodie had beaten Mariel to Taxi Driver. Woody hated this mixture of Annie Hall and Interiors so much, he offered a movie for free if UA dumped it. “At this point in my life, if this is the best I can do, they shouldn't give me money to make movies.”  

  6.  Brooke Shields, The Blue Lagoon, 1979.   Auditioned for Emmeline - despite Grease director Randal Kleiser wanting his shipwrecked couple to be naked throughout the re-make. (They were not). Shields had her long hair glued to her front - and a nude body double.

  7.  Kristy McNichol, Little Darlings, 1979.   Preferring the similar Foxes, Foster passed Angel to Kristy McNichol… who lost one of the other foxy gals to Cherie Currie.

  8.  Jennifer Jason Leigh, Fast Times At Ridgemont High, 1981.   In the mix (with Ellen Barkin, Diane Lane, Michelle Pfeiffer, Kelly Preston, Brooke Shields, Elizabeth Shue) for Stacy Hamilton. Foster was far too busy with her studies at Yale.

  9. Diane Lane, Ladies and Gentlemen, The Fabulous Stains, 1981.   Dreamgirls meet Spinal Tap - almost. Director Lou Adler tells it like it is - almost - as a three girl group who cannot sing or play guitars surpass The Looters, Metal Corpses among other rising/fading stars.

  10.  Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Best Little Girl in the World, TV, 1981.   An actors’ strike delayed production. When everything was ready to roll again, Foster was too busy studying at Yale to play an anorexic teenager.

  11. Kristy McNichol, White Dog, 1981.   “EVERYONE’S FIRST CHOICE WAS JODIE,” growled maverick auteur Samuel Fuller in his usual capitals. Including Foster. Except her dance card was full. Along came Kristy. “Her enthusiasm, her authenticity, Her Easygoing Smile won me over.”

  12. Michelle Pfeiffer, Scarface, 1982.   Too hasty for her own good, she rejected the role of Elvira Hancock. So did all the usual sexpots… Rosanna Arquette, Kim Basinger, Colleen Camp, Glenn Close, Geena Davis, Carrie Fisher, Melanie Griffith, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Kay Lenz, Kelly McGillis, Kristy McNichol, Deborah Raffin, Brooke Shields, Sharon Stone, Kathleen Turner.

  13. Daryl Hannah, Splash, 1983.   The Hotel New Hampshire got in the way of becoming Tom Hanks’ mermaid.

  14.  Linda Hamilton, The Terminator, 1983. In all, 52 actresses were considered, seen, or tested for Sarah Connor. James Cameron created her for Bridget Fonda. She passed; so did Tatum O’Neal. He decided to go older… Glenn Close won - her schedule didn’t agree. OK, Kate Capshaw! No, she was tied to Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom - just as Kathleen Turner was Romancing The Stone. Debra Winger won her audition, said yes… then no. The other 46 ladies were: Jodie, Rosanna Arquette, Kim Basinger, Christy Brinkley, Colleen Camp, Jamie Lee Curtis, Geena Davis, Mia Farrow, Carrie Fisher, Teri Garr, Jennifer Grey, Melanie Griffith, Darryl Hannah, Goldie Hawn, Barbara Hershey, Angelica Huston, Amy Irving, Diane Keaton, Margot Kidder, Diane Lane, Jessica Lange, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Kay Lenz, Heather Locklear, Lori Loughlin, Kelly McGillis, Kristy McNichol, Madonna, Liza Minnelli, Mary Tyler Moore, Rhea Perlman (!), Michelle Pfeiffer, Gilda Radner (!), Deborah Raffin, Miranda Richardson, Meg Ryan, Susan Sarandon, Jane Seymour, Ally Sheedy, Cybill Shepherd, Brooke Shields, Sissy Spacek, Sharon Stone, Sigourney Weaver. Most were in contention again a few years later for Fatal Attraction (won by Close) and The Accused (going to Foster and McGillis). Ten years later (after T2), Linda gave birth to Cameron’s daughter and Josephine’s parents wed in 1997… for two years.

  15. Elizabeth McGovern, Once Upon A Time in America, 1983. Italian maestro Sergio Leone’s first choice for Deborah Gell, the dancer lover of James Woods’ somewhat psychotic Max… in Leone’s ninth and (alas) last film. Unceremoniously slashed by 90 minutes by the LA suits for the US market, churning it into a load of old bollocks. Unforgivable!

  16. Demi Moore, St Elmo’s Fire, 1984.   “Everyone wanted that role,” recalled director Joel Schumacher. His office was opposite John Hughes’ where Demi got tired for waiting for him., “I happened to see her running down the hallway. I had my assistant run after her and find out who she was - “Demi Moore and she was on General Hospital.” So I called her agent and she came in and did a reading. There was no one like Demi Moore at that age in the world. In the movie she gets to be sexy, seductive, hilariously funny and dramatic. She becomes a coke head and she tries to kill herself by freezing to death by opening the windows in her apartment. She had to go through 35 different things in the movie. At that age? Pretty fucking amazing, right? There was no one like her.” Hughes and Schumacher were rather like Lucas and Spielberg in the 70s, dipping into the same age talent pool. Those Brat Packers Hughes kept in high school, Schumacher made, as here, college kids. Or those who agreed - Jodie did not.

  17.  Molly Ringwald, The Breakfast Club, 1984.   John Hughes was most keen on Foster to head his second auteur outing. She wisely passed. Way too old at 22 for Claire Standish, just perfect for Hughes’ Sixteen Candles find, at 16… like her second-time Hughes movie co-star Anthony Michael Hall. They dated between the two movies.

  18.  Molly Ringwald, Pretty In Pink, 1985. John Hughes loves Jodie Foster, Part II. But same as before. Too old to be one of Hughes’ teenage-angsters. Justine Bateman, Jennifer Beals, Diane Lane, Lori Loughlin, Tatum O’Neal, Sarah Jessica Parker and Brooke Shields were also in the Andie mix. Ringwald loved the disc and thw film, but loathed the actual dress… Hughes hated his ending and rewrote it for another teen triangle, Some Kind of Wonderful, 1986. Ringwald refused to play it again. “I can’t be 16 forever!” Hughes was furious with the star he discovered for his previous three films and never worked with her again.

  19.  Elisabeth Shue, Adventures in Babysitting, 1986. For his directing debut, Gremlins writer Chris Columbus saw just about every gal in town for the explosive night of babysitter Chris Parker: a project hanging around (with Jane Fonda) since the 60s. Twenty years on, Jane’s niece, Bridget Fonda, was booked. Kathleen Turner was the next “first choice.” Louis-Dreyfuss auditioned - and passed to Foster, who passed to Michelle Pfeiffer… who she quit for The Witches of Eastwick! More auditions were held for: Justine Bateman (her TV series, Family Ties, cancelled that idea!), Melanie Griffith, Andie MacDowell, Tatum O’Neal, Brooke Shields, Sharon Stone. Columbus refused Kelly McGillis and Valerie Bertinelli lost out to Shue on the final day.

  20. Glenn Close, Fatal Attraction, 1987.

  21.  Natasha Richardson, The Handmaid’s Tale, 1989.   German director Volker Schlondorff also thought of Sigourney Weaver.

  22. Nicole Kidman, Days of Thunder, 1989.   When Robin Wright proved unavailable for Dr Claire Lewicki, a dozen actresses were seen, from Foster to Madonna. Having seen Dead Calm, Tom Cruise voted for Kidman - and wed her: 1990-2001.

  23. Sadie Benning, Me and Rubyfruit, 1989.
    Unknown US director Sadie Benning asked Foster twice to head up a four-minute film… based on Rita Mae Brown’s novel. Jodie passed, also twice. Therefore, So Benning became the unsympathetic, cliched and confused teenager in a grainy mix of home-movie and video-diary.   The first of Benning’s eleven shorts between 1989-1999, Me’s only known cinema screening was during a 2008 documentary festival in Copenhagen.  

  24. Julia Roberts, Pretty Woman, 1989.

  25. Catherine O’Hara, Home Alone, 1990.   An astonishing 37 stars (Harrison Ford, Jack Nicholson, Jessica Lange, Michelle Pfeiffer, etc) were considered for the forgetful parents - nothing roles in a film written for and duly stolen by the stranded kid, Macauley Culkin.

  26. Virginia Madsen, The Hot Spot, 1989.      Dennis Hopper and Foster made the studio-butchered Catchfire earlier that year - and did not gell. (She yelled Cut! during one scene!). Put off by the required nudity, Foster refused this far better, highly erotic movie. (She also, allegedly, warned off Meryl from working with him). Debra Winger had been his initial choice. He also checked Theresa Russeel. And Melanie Griffith, pregnant with Dakota Johnson, who grew up into the Fifty Shades of Grey soft-core sex franchise. (Her father, Don Johnson, plaued this film’s amoral, cock o’ the walk drifter). Ultimately Virginia Madsen was the supremely sensuous Dolly - finding sex in car more fun than eating cotton-candy barefoot - perfectly matching what Chicago critic Roger Ebert hailed as “a superior work in an old tradition.” Hopper liked to call it Last Tango In Texas. They wuz both right!
  27.  Susan Sarandon, Thelma & Louise, 1990.

  28. Juliette Lewis, Cape Fear, 1991.     Oldest, with Jennifer Jason Leigh, at 29 of the many - Christina Applegate, Drew Barrymore, Jennifer Connelly, Shannen Doherty, Nicole Eggeret, Bridget Fonda, Helen Hunt, Nicole Kidman, Diane Lane, Alyssa Milano, Demi Moore, Sarah Jessica Parker, Molly Ringwald, Meg Ryan, Winona Ryder, Brooke Shields, Tiffani Thiessen, Reese Witherspoon - considered by Steven Spielberg and, later, Martin Scorsese for the teen daughter of Nick Nolte and Jessica Lange: Danielle Bowden. (Nancy in the 1962 original). Some found it too sexy and, indeed, few could have equalled the on-heat musk of Juliette’s totally improvised - and one take - seduction scene with Robert De Niro.

  29. Kim Basinger, The Marrying Man (UK: Too Hot To Handle), 1991.     Showed interest after Disney refused to meet director Herbert Ross' price to direct Meg Ryan-Alec Baldwin - resulting in Basinger-Baldwin and writer Neil Simon’s "worst professional experience."

  30.  Sharon Stone, Basic Instinct, 1991.

  31.  Jennifer Jason Leigh, Rush, 1992.     Foster named but first-time director Lili Zanuck held out for JJL as the narc - after what the actress called “so many great parts in not-great movies.”

  32.  Meg Ryan, Sleepless in Seattle, 1992.   Big error.. But she was not alone in refusing the big rom-com hit. Kim Basinger, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Nicole Kidman, Demi Moore, Michelle Pfeiffer and Natasha Richardson also fled. And so it became the second of three Tom Hanks-Meg Ryan triumphs.

  33.  Kyra Sedgwick, Singles, 1992.   For Linda,  fledgling auteur Cameron Crowe obviously rushed for safety to Jennifer Jason Leigh,  from  his breakthrough, Fast Times At Ridgemont High, 1982.   She agreed then changed her mind and he went to Foster, Mary Stuart Masterson and...  Kyra.

  34.  Uma Thurman, Jennifer Eight, 1992.     “It’s insane we even have to go through a test,” producer Scott Rudin told UK writer-director Bruce Robinson, “when we all know we;re gonna end up offering it to Jodie.” Not so insane. She refused it! Rudin had produced her directing debut, Little Man Tate, 1991, in a state of what she called healthy mistrust. “I’d certainly never put myself in a position where he could hurt me.”

  35.  Demi Moore, A Few Good Men, 1992.     And fewer good women.

  36. Uma Thurman, Even Cowgirls Get The Blues, 1992.     Well out of it. Gus Van Sant certainly was. (And he directed it).

  37.  Juliette Binoche, Damage, UK-France, 1992.   Impressed by Silence of the Lambs, Paris auteur Louis Malle first thought of Jodie as the girl sexually involved with the British parliamentarian father of her fiancée - in Malle’s penultimate movie.

  38. Bridget Fonda, Point Of No Return, 1992.   Foster had little hesitation in refusing the Hollywood re-hash (as cumbersome as its title) of réalisateur Luc Besson’s much sharper 1989 French hit, La femme Nikita. Winona Ryder also passed…. while director John Badham (!) somehow spurned Halle Berry, Daryl Hannah, Nicole Kidman and Julia Roberts for the hit-woman!

  39. Laura Dern, Jurassic Park, 1992

  40. Geena Davis, Angie, 1993.     The official reason for Foster was that Madonna was booked for Abel Ferrara’s Dangerous Game, 1992.   Then, one of the singer’s emails was leaked - furious with the head Fox, Joe Roth, for dumping her for a non-Italian in the titular role. In truth, Madonna fled after hearing Roth didn’t want her because she couldn’t carry a movie. (Not that this one did any better without her). Her director, Jonathan Kaplan, also quit and Martha Coolidge took over with her 1991 Rambling Rose star - after some thoughts about a dozen others, from Halle Berry to Meryl Streep. Oh, very Italian!

  41.  Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hudsucker Proxy, 1993. This once, the Coen brothers' struck out. Happens to the best of film-makers.

  42.  Denzel Washington, Philadelphia, 1993.   His Silence of the Lambs Oscar-winner was one of director Jonathan Demme's early plans for the lawyer acting for another lawyer - sacked because he had AIDS.

  43.  Sandra Bullock, Speed, 1993. Although sharing the heroics and the driving of the bus-bomb with Keanu Reeves, most girls saw it as The Guy’s film. An amazing 36 usuals refused to be Annie: Foster, Rosanna Arquette, Kim Basinger, Halle Berry, Glenn Close (!), Geena Davis, Cameron Diaz, Carrie Fisher, Bridget Fonda, Melanie Griffith, Daryl Hannah, Mariska Hargitay, Barbara Hershey, Anjelica Huston, Diane Lane, Jessica Lange, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Kay Lenz, Alyssa Milano, Demi Moore, Tatum O’Neal, Sarah Jessica Parker, Michelle Pfeiffer, Julia Roberts, Meg Ryan, Winona Ryder, Jane Seymour, Ally Sheedy, Brooke Shields, Meryl Streep (!), Emma Thompson (!), Meg Tilly, Marisa Tomei, Kathleen Turner, Sigourney Weaver and Debra Winger.

  44. Nicole Kidman, To Die For, 1994.    “You aren’t anybody in America if you’re not on TV…”  Most young sparks agreed this was a role to die for... the girl who would do anything (murder included) to get on TV, and stay there. They included Foster, Patricia Arquette, Jennifer Connelly, Joan Cusack, Bridget Fonda, Melanie Griffith, Darryl Hannah, Holly Hunter, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tatum O’Neal, Mary-Louise Parker, Sarah Jessica Parker, Michelle Pfeiffer, Meg Ryan (passing up $5m), Brooke Shields, Uma Thurman. However, Debra Winger simply refused… and Kidman persuaded director Gus Van Sant that she was his destiny.

  45.  Robin Wright Penn, Forrest Gump, 1995.   After nine years, two scripts, several actors and directors refusing, the problem became Jenny... Robert Zemeckis was upset when his first choice refused. The film still managed six Oscars.

  46. Patricia Arquette, Beyond Rangoon, 1995.     Michelle Pfeiffer pulled out and attempts were made to rope in Foster Or, Meryl Streep.

  47.  Kate Winslet, Titanic, 1996.

  48.  Sean Penn, The Game, 1996.   For his first film since Seven, 1994, director David Fincher wanted to work with Foster. And vice versa. But he would not agree with her signature fetish about altering things…   Fincher cast her as Michael Douglas’ sister. No, she said, she wanted to be his daughter. Both men disagreed (Douglas, just 17 years older, had already played Jodie’s father in the 70s) and turned the sister into a brother. Fincher gave in over Panic Room, 2001, when Foster churned (the injured) Nicole Kidman’s icy Hitchcockian blonde into a grittier, political action-Mom. Then, in 2006, Foster changed her Brave One heroine from newspaper reporter - not “compelling in terms of the narrative” - to… radio reporter!

  49. Julia Roberts, Conspiracy Theory, 1997.     Although faxing-pals since Maverick, Foster still had to turn down working with Mel Gibson again due to Contact. Winona Ryder also passed and Roberts went conspiritorial with Gibson.

  50. Aniston, The Object of My Affection, 1997. Years before the project took off, novelist Stephen McCauley asked Foster to make the film of his book. She waited and waited but was long gone by 1987… when Sarah Jessica Parker replaced the fleeing Julia Roberts and Winona Ryder… before Aniston became Nina Borowski. Jodie was right… Chicago critic Roger Ebert dubbed it a seriocom - “the worst kind of sitcom - a serious one.”

  51. Kate Capshaw, The Love Letter, 1998,   Peter Ho-Sun Chan, one of the Chinese film industry’s superstar directors, longed to work with Foster. He just chose the wrong time to invite her into his screen version of Cathleen Schine’s novel about a misunderstood love letter. Jodie was pregnant with her first son Charles Foster (but no Kane).  Mrs Spielberg substituted.

  52.  Gwyneth Paltrow, Shakespeare In Love, 1998.   She fled from Viola de Lesseps as directors kept changing: Kenneth Branagh, Kevin Reynolds, Edward Zwick.

  53. Ashley Judd, Double Jeopardy, 1999.   Still pregnant. And yet, the film eventually opened only one month before her first film made after the baby, Anna and The King. Michelle Pfeiffer, Meg Ryan, Brooke Shields also passed.  

  54.  Cate Blanchett, The Gift, 2000.     Directors switched, from William Friedkin to (co-writer) Billy Bob Thornton, when Foster was due to star. Sam Rami helmed the radiant Aussie.

  55. Julianne Moore, Hannibal, 2000.   No matter the 15 re-writes and other inducements, Jodie decided against reprising her FBI agent Clarice Starling in the (bad) Silence of the Lambs sequel.

  56.  Kirsten Dunst, Spider-Man, 2001.

  57.  Renée Zellweger, Chicago, 2002.

  58.  Mary-Louise Parker, Angels In America, TV, 2003.     Among Robert Altman's line-up before the controversial Tony Kushner two-part Broadway play was filmed by Mike Nichols for HBO.

  59. Jamie Lee Curtis, Freaky Friday, 2003.   A mother and teenage daughter swop lives… just for one day. Producer Andrew Gunn tried to persuade Foster to be Mom as she was the kid in the ’76 original. No way, said Jodie, such casting gimmicks overshadowed any movie’s merit.

  60.  Cate Blanchett, Veronica Guerin, 2003.     As the life of the murdered Irish journalist moved into the firm, if not necessarily accurate hands of producer Jerry Bruckheimer.

  61.  Joan Cusack, Chicken Little, 2004.   To find the right voice for Abby Mallard in Disney’s paltry poultry pic, Disney went through Foster, Jamie Lee Curtis, Geena Davis, Laura Dern, Jamie Donnelly, Helen Hunt, Holly Hunter, Madonna and, of course, Sigourney Weaver. (By now many Alien fans were working at every studio). Plus Sarah Jessica Parker, when her husband, Matthew Broderick, was in the frame for the titular hero.

  62.  Ashley Judd, Bug, 2005.   William Exorcist Friedkin first wanted Jodie for his latest stab at horror - more intense on-screen than at the box-office.

  63.  Leslie Mann, Knocked Up, 2007.

  64.  Elizabeth Banks, W, 2008.       In the loop for Laura, wife of the “Mission [never] Accomplished” 43rd US President, George W Bush, in Oliver Stone’s rushed to judgement bio. W was Josh Brolin with Colin Hanks among his speechwriters; Banks had co-starred in Steven Spielberg’s Catch Me If You Can, 2001, with their father James Brolin and Tom Hanks. Foster would bd better POTUS than W ever was.

  65. Julia Roberts, Valentine’s Day, 2009.     Jennifer Anniston and Sandra Bullock also passed on Captain Kate Hazeltine - in the 21-star-jammed LA take on Love Actually Julia said: Sure. Of course, she did. The director was the man behind her breakthrough, Pretty Woman, in 1989. “I owe my career to Garry,” she said. “There was no known reason for him to hire me... and even he was puzzled by his decision.” Julia was paid $3. this time. Or, about $12,000 per each of her Kate’s 251 words.

  66. Sigourney Weaver, Avatar, 2008.   Foster and Jamie Lee Curtis were in the frame for biologist Dr Grace Augustine. But then this was a James Cameron movie - his biggest space fantasy! So, Grace had to be Ripley! Naturally, she then channeled him for the rôle… “A brilliant, approach-driven, idealistic perfectionist.” With, she added, “a great heart underneath.”

  67. Diane Lane, Man of Steel, 2011.

  68.  Nicole Kidman, Stoker, 2012.   Big switch for the first English-language film of South Korean director Chan-wook Park (Oldboy), His first choice of Foster and Carey Mulligan became Kidman and Mia Wasikowska as the mother and daughter troubled by the most mysterious Uncle Charlie since Hitchcock’s Shadow of a Doubt some 60 years earlier.

  69.  Mary-Louise Parker, RIPD, 2012.   Turned down the woman offering dead cop Ryan Reynolds a 100-year job, partnering Jeff Bridges, in the Rest In Peace Department. Great title. Film, not so much.

  70.  Julianne Moore, Carrie, 2012.   Julianne and Jodie were both flag-poled   for Carrie’s deranged mother for the second unnecessary re-hash in a decade. Haley Bennett, Emily Browning, Lily Collins, Dakota Fanning, Bella Heathcote, Shailene Woodley all (wisely) passed on being the titular daughter.

     

 

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