- Kandice Stroh, Foxes, 1979. Sex and the American teenage girl… The UK director Adrian Lyne seems to be the only unit member (well, it was his film- making debut) who remembered that Moore auditoned, at 17, for a demi rôle among the foxy chicks of San Fernando Valley. As Deirdre: into herself, her sexuality, boys and disco. Dropping out of LA's Fairfax High at 16, Moore’s "concrete decision" to act was influenced by a beautiful teenage actress neighbour. "She knew where she was going. She liked who she was, made statements about what she liked and didn't. I wanted to learn what it was she had." That was Nastassja Kinski - "she probably doesn't even remember." Moore tried drama class, quit, modelled and was into low-budget horrors when Lyne saw her for the fox turned hooker to support a drug habit.
- Jennifer Beals, Flashdance, 1983. The only time Demi lacked, to be brutal, fuckability... Adrian Lyne saw her again - and passed again - a year before casting agent Wally Nicita chose her for Blame It On Rio because she had star quality. "The camera loves her. She's a wonderful actress and has a distinctive voice that made her different from the other starlets." To select the best of Demi, Jennifer Beals and New York model Leslie Wiung, Paramount chief Michael Eisner put their tests on one reel and screened it for 200 of the lot’s macho gaffers, grips and Teamsters. And the pre-Disney Eisner told them how to vote. “I want to know which of these three women you’d most want to fuck.” Was that Harry Cohn applauding from his grave?
- Maureen Teefy, Supergirl, 1984. Like who wants to be Lucy Lane when the whole movie revolves around Super Linda Lee!
- Anjelica Huston, Prizzi’s Honor, 1984. “So let’s do it. Right here. On the Oriental. With all the lights on.” Maerose Prizzi knew what she wanted, where and when from her Family’s hit man, Jack Nicholson - the unlikeliest Mafioso since the Corleones’ James Caan. Before realising his daughter was Oscar-winning perfection, director John Huston looked at some 19 potential Maeroses. From the sublime Moore, Rosanna Arquette, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Liza Minnelli, Michelle Pfeiffer (been there, done that and got the Married To The Mob and Scarface t-shirts), Debra Winger… to the ridiculous: Geena Davis, Melanie Griffith, Daryl Hannah, Emma Thompson, Sela Ward, Debra Winger… and the damn stupid: Linda Blair, Carrie Fisher, Kelly Lebrock, Heather Locklear, Sarah Jessica Parker, Ally Sheedy.
- Heather Langenkamp, A Nightmare On Elm Street, 1985. Moore, Courteney Cox, Tracey Gold and Jennifer Grey were in the mix for Nancy, the teenager who utters the immortal cry of horror after a near drowning: "Oh God, I look 20!"
- Kelly LeBrock, Weird Science, 1985. Also convinced of her future ("everyone knew it was going to happen"), producer Joel Silver saw her as the perfect woman computerised by two tweenage nerds. Writer-director John Hughes did not.
- Kim Basinger, 9 1/2 Weeks, 1986. Clean of drug and booze for St. Elmo's Fire (Joel Schumacher had sent her home one day for being high "and in 24 hours this young woman turned her life around"), she turned up for a third Adrian Lyne encounter. "I'm very ambitious and very driven." Lyne saw ‘em all! Demi, Tatum O’Neal, Isabella Rossellini, Dominique Sanda, Kathleen Turner, Sigourney Weaver. And Andie MacDowell who thought the script was borderline sleaze. Oh, baby, it was way over the border!
- Glenn Close, Fatal Attraction, 1986.
- Jodie Foster, The Accused, 1988.
Awful thing to say. Except it is true. Jodie Foster would never have won her (first) Oscar for this trenchant drama - if actress Kelly McGillis had not been raped in 1982… At first, the role of the rape victim Sarah Tobias was written for Andie MacDowell. She passed. The Paramount suits then saw 34 other young actresses for the (real life) victim. Or, for their own rape bait fantasies - including 16-year-old Alyssa Milano! Foster was refused a test because she was “not sexy enough”! And, anyway, the studio had decided upon McGillis, a high flyer in Paramount’s Witness and Top Gun. And, naturally, she refused point-blank! She knew what it was to be brutally raped and Kelly had no wish to revisit the horror and agony of her own assault six years earlier. The suits were annoyed. They needed her. She was hot at the box-office, their box-office. They had made her a star!! Eventually, McGillis agreed to play Sarah’s defence attorney - on condition that unsexy Jodie played Sarah! The suits caved, tested Foster and the rest is Oscar history… So is the huge list of talent also seen for Sarah. Starting with the Fatal Attraction also-rans: Moore, Rosanna Arquette, Ellen Barkin, Kim Basinger, Jennifer Beals, Jennifer Grey, Melanie Griffith, Linda Hamilton, Darryl Hannah, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Diane Keaton, Kelly Preston, Meg Ryan, Jane Seymour, Sharon Stone, Meryl Streep, Debra Winger. And moving on to the younger Melissa Sue Anderson (trying to break her Little House on the Prairie image), Justine Bateman, Valerie Bertinelli, Phoebe Cates, Jennifer Connelly, Joan Cusack, Judy Davis, Kristin Davis, Bridget Fonda, Annabeth Gish, Mariel Hemingway, Kelly LeBrock, Virginia Madsen, Brigitte Nielsen, Tatum O’Neal, Molly Ringwald, Mia Sara, Ally Sheedy, Brooke Shields, Uma Thurman. Oh, and Julia Louis-Dreyfuss, said the suits, was “too nice.” Rape victims shouldn’t be nice? Oh, Hollywood!
- Elizabeth Pena, Jacob's Ladder, 1990. And (after Fatal Attraction), a fifth Adrian Lyne face meet... Was there no one else in town making movies with young women?"She's a verystrong woman,"reported Lyne, "with very strong opinions and you kinda wonder..." He didn't even consider her for his sixth - Indecent Proposal, 1992.Yet she got it. And argued constantly on whether her young wife preyed upon by millionaire Robert Redford should be strong or vulnerable. "Half the time... I could've murdered her."
- Andie MacDowell, Hudson Hawk, 1991. Demi was Mrs Bruce Willis by now and Bruce tried to get his her as his leading lady - adding weight to media rumours that she was responsible for the sacking of Dutch star Marushcka Detmers who began the film that MacDowell finished. Fortunately for Mrs Willis, schedules did not interface with her Butcher's Wife location or she would have gone from 1990's top box-office winner, Ghost, to 1991's top flop.
- Jennifer Jason Leigh, Rush, 1991. Universal wanted Demi's suddenly bankable name. First time director Lili Fini Zanuck (Richard's wife) stuck out for Leigh - only keen on "to make movies that I would go to see."
- Lori Singer, A League Of Their Own, 1991. The studio wanted star names. After co-producing Mortal Thoughts, 1991, all she and Bruce Willis wanted was another baby.
- Juliette Lewis, Cape Fear, 1991. Among the many - the very many - considered by Steven Spielberg and, later, Martin Scorsese for the teen daughter of Nick Nolte and Jessica Lange: Danielle Bowden. (Nicole in the 1962 original). Christina Applegate, Drew Barrymore, Jennifer Connelly, Shannen Doherty, Nicole Eggeret, Bridget Fonda, Jodie Foster, Helen Hunt, Nicole Kidman, Diane Lane, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Alyssa Milano, Sarah Jessica Parker, Molly Ringwald, Meg Ryan, Winona Ryder, Brooke Shields, Tiffani Thiessen, Reese Witherspoon -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.
- Sharon Stone, Basic Instinct, 1991.
- Meg Tilly, Leaving Normal, 1992. All set with Cher until pregnant with their second daughter, Scout LaRue Willis... as proved to the world on the August 1991 Vanity Fair cover.
- Kelly Lynch, Three of Hearts, 1992. The first threesome had been Madonna, Demi, Robert Downey Jr. "I don't think I'm a big time movie star." No, she just acted like it, becoming known as Gimme Moore for her demands, such as, on The Butcher's Wife, 1991: an assistant, dialogue coach, masseuse, psychic consultant, nanny, bodyguard, hairdresser, make-up person, stand-in, limo and private plane for location-hopping.
- Meg Ryan, Sleepless in Seattle, 1992. Or… When Harry Met Sally Meets When Sam Met Suzy. Same writer, Nora Ephron. Same Sally - Meg Ryan in the second of three ephemeral outings with Tom Hanks. Also forgetting that romcoms are rarely plausible: Kim Bsinger, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Nicole Kidman, Michelle Pfeiffer, Julia Roberts. And a surprise Brit - Natasha Richardson.
- Geena Davis, Angie, 1993. The official reason was Madonna was already booked for Abel Ferrara’s Dangerous Game, 1992. Then, one of her emails was leaked - furious with the head Fox, Joe Roth, for dumping her for a non-Italian in the titular role. In truth, she 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!
- Marisa Tomei, Untamed Heart, 1993. Demi is good and has her Bruce. Tomeii is good and has her Oscar.
- Sharon Stone, Sliver, 1993. Moore, among others, was a reserve as producer Bob Evans set out to melt the intractable Stone... Sharon gave in and, he alleged, made his life hell. (Gimme Moore would not have..?)
- Kathleen Turner, Undercover Blues, 1993. Considered long before Herbert Ross inherited the project from William Dear and changed the title from... Cloak and Diaper. Owch!
- Bridget Fonda, Point Of No Return, 1993. Hollywood dangled all the usual damsels but could never persuade realisateur Luc Besson to re-tread his French Nikita, 1900. Joel Schumacher also refused to direct and it finished as a B (for John Badham) movie, (and a Z-style TV series). Besson simply took the money and made The Fifth Element, 1997... with Demi’s Bruce.
- Tia Carrere, Wayne's World 2, 1993. Once Kim Basinger offered to be Garth's girl in the big budget sequel, Mike Myers was so jealous of partner Dana Carvey that he wanted Wayne's gal to be Demi - or Madonna.
- 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 refused to be Annie: Demi, Rosanna Arquette, Kim Basinger, Halle Berry, Glenn Close (!), Geena Davis, Cameron Diaz, Carrie Fisher, Bridget Fonda, Jodie Foster, Melanie Griffith, Daryl Hannah, Mariska Hargitay, Barbara Hershey, Anjelica Huston, Diane Lane, Jessica Lange, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Kay Lenz, Alyssa Milano, 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.
- Julia Ormond, Sabrina, 1995. Among the many seen for the unnecessary (obviously!) Audrey Hepburn re-tread were Moore, Juliette Binoche, dancer Darcy Bissell, Sandra Bullock, Julie Delpy, Cameron Diaz, Gwyneth Paltrow, Robin Wright, Catherine Zeta-Jones. All far better suited than Ormond. So it blows.
- Robin Wright Penn, Forrest Gump, 1995. Few girls agreed to test. Robin was first, nearly eight months pregnant with Hopper Jack Penn. And she made all the suits cry!
- Sandra Bullock, While You Were Sleeping, 1995. A light confection. just what the hard-nosed Gimme Moore required after such dross as The Scarlet Letter - as big a flop as Sandra's Speed was a winner.
- Kristin Scott Thomas, The English Patient, 1996. She certainly tried hard to win Katharine. “I know that Demi’s name was always mentioned in the context of alternative casting,” director Anthony Minghella told journalist Peter Biskind. However, the Fox boss of the time, Bill Mechanic, told the same writer: “I promise on my life - I am not a liar - Demi Moore’s name was never uttered, Demi Moore was never in a movie while I was at Fox, Demi Moore was never offered a movie, much less The English Patient. We’re not stupid.” No? What, then, would Mechanic call pulling out of a film that won Best Picture and eight other Oscars at little Miramax?
- Uma Thurman, Batman & Robin, 1996.
- Julia Roberts, Runaway Bride, 1999. Sandra Bullock, Geena Davis, Ellen DeGeneres also jilted the comedy - and, at the time, Harrison Ford. Julia made it with her pretty man, Richard Gere.
- Angelina Jolie, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, 2001. Angelina proved unbeatable, on and off-screen.
- Sharon Stone, Basic Instinct 2, 2005. There was a moment in her high priced revenge for being trapped (said she) into flashing her pubic hair in the first film (which just happened to make her a global star!) when Stoner when refused to be Catherine Trammell again. MGM ran to Demi - or Ashley Judd. And my goodness, who was that rushing back into the fold? And for what, an obvious flop before one scene was shot in anger... Because... What can she do for an encore?
- Jennifer Jason Leigh, Palindromes, 2004. For the oldest version of a baby-hungry 13-year-old - played by eight actors of varying ages, sizes, colours and even sexes in Todd Solondz’s sorta sequel to his 1995 landmark, Welcome To The Dollhouse. Critic Roger Ebert got it right. “You may hate it, but you have seen it, and in a strange way it has seen you.”
- Nicole Kidman, Nine, 2009.
- Charlize Theron, Æon Flux, 2005. Moore refused as the titular assassin in the utopian city of Bregna, circa 2415.
- Michelle Monaghan, Trucker, 2009. A 30-something single mom, a cold, hard-drinking, promiscuous, loner trucker paying off her own rig - who else were they gonna call but GI Jane, right? Yet Monaghan took it away from her.