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Brendan Fraser


  1. Chris O’Donnell, Scent of a Woman, 1991. Most of the of the 1992 School Ties cast - indeed new, all the young turks - were in the pot for Charlie, the prep schooler babysitting a blind Al Pacino (finally winning his Oscar). Fraser, Ben Affleck, Randall Batinkoff, Matt Damon, Leonardo DiCaprio, Stephen Dorff, Cole Hauser, Anthony Rapp, Sam Rockwell and Christopher Serrone.
  2. Dermot Mulroney, My Best Friend's Wedding, 1997.   "They were casting it at the same time as George of the Jungle ..." Fraser went on the vines.
  3. Matthew Broderick, Inspector Gadget, 1999.   After being the idiotic George of the Jungle, 1997, Fraser was an obvious notion - until Broderick popped up on the radar.
  4. James Franco, James Dean, TV, 2001.   In the Jimmy mix with Johnny Depp, Edward Furlong, Gary Oldman and Brad Pitt. Other actors played… Pier Angeli,  Bette Davis, Judy Garland, Julie Harris, Hedda Hopper, Rock Hudson, Louis Jourdan, Elia Kazan, Raymond Massey, Marilyn Monroe, Geraldine Page, Nicholas Ray, George Stevens, Lee Strasberg  - and director Mark Rydell was  Jack Warner   Oh,  you hadda be there! 
  5. Matthew McConaughey, The Wedding Planner, 2001.   All change! Due to being stuck in their Bedazzled and Buffy schedules, Fraser and Sarah Michelle Gellar churned into McConaughey and Jennifer Lopez - at $5m for him and $9m for her.
  6. Steve Coogan, Around The World In 80 Days, 2001.   Possibly the worst cast re-make in Hollywood history.
  7. Josh Hartnett, Wicker Park, 2003.    All set to be Matt Damon when Joel Schumacher was due to direct the Hollywood re-tread of the French L ’apartment, 1995.
  8. Ioan Gruffud, Fantastic Four, 2004.     George Clooney, Jeff Goldblum, Hugh Jackman, Dennis Quaid, Patrick Wilson were in the loop. And for some inexplicable reason, the decidedly non-fantastic Fraser was also considered for Dr Reed Richards (aka Mr. Fantastic). He was beaten to by an 007 contender. And, inexplicably, Fraser became one, too...
  9. Daniel Craig, Casino Royale, 2006.
  10. Brandon Routh, Superman Returns, 2006.

  11. Dwayne Johnson, Journey 2: The Mysterious Island, 2010. Fraser left when the original director Eric Brevig quit the 3D sequel to Journey To The Center Of The Earth - which made a global $242m.
  12. Christian Slater, Freaky Deaky, 2011.   All four original stars - Fraser, Matt Dillon, William H Macy, Craig Robinson - suddenly quit and were replaced in the film of Elmore Leonard’s favourite novel by Slater, Billy Burke, Crispin Glover, Michael Ja White. 
  13. Daniel Craig, Cowboys and Aliens, 2011.   The great title (better than the movie) had been stuck in Development Hell since 1997 which explains why such superstars (!) as Fraser, Chuck Norris and Mr T (!) had been invited to saddle up as the outlaw hero Jake Lonergan. So were Jackie Chan, Robert Downey Jr, Bill Paxton, Kurt Russell and Bruce Willis. And Roger Rabbit, why not?
  14. James D’Arcy, Those Who Kill, TV, 2012.     Fraser pulled out of his TV series debut…Well, Chloe Sevigny was the main star as the cop opposite D’Arcy’s profiler.
  15. Sean Bean, Legends, TV, 2012.       Again, he avoided a series debut -  not the right fit, according to Fox TV.  The hero Martin Odum is a deep-cover operative, physically  transforming himself for each case. Perfect, therefore,  for the action star of Games of Thrones, Lords of the Rings and, once,  nearly James Bond. 
  16. Josh Hartnett, The Lovers (UK: Time Traveller), Australia-Belgium-India, 2013.  The nadir of UK director Roland Joffé’s career was put down by Slant Magazine’s Clayton Dillard as  “a shamelessly derivative and preposterous would-be blockbuster that goofily fashions itself as a sweeping romance, time-travel sci-fi tale, and gallant period piece all at once.” Could have been worse. Joffé first wanted Fraser as the dual-rôle hero. The 1778 one was actually called… James Stewart!








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