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Owen Wilson


  1. Breckin Meyer, Clueless,1994.    Wilson  and Seth Green tried out forTravis in director Amy Heckerling’s Beverly Hills flip-side of her Fast Times at Ridgemont High(and making as many new stars). “A smart and funny movie,” said Chicago critic Roger Ebert, ”and the characters are in on the joke.”  Meyer worked on the scripts for Reese Witherspoon (up for Cher) and her far from official sequels, Legally Blonde 1 and 2, 2000 and 2002.
  2. Ben Stiller, There’s Something About Mary, 1998.    They didn’t want to know about Stiller, until the Farrelly Brother's next choice was Wilso.   nSo it was Ben who became A Star by catching his family jewelsin his zipper (“Is it the frank or the beans?” asks Mary's solicitous stepfather). Ben and Owen made eightfilms together during 1996-2004.
  3. John Goodman, The Emperor’s New Groove, 2000. The much troubled Disney toon started out as Kingdom of the Sun, with much the same cast and characters. Test-screenings, when 50% complete, were so awful that the production was rested. New director Mark Dindal (and ten other writers !) cut Wilson, the Prince and the Pauper-ish story, five of Sting’s six songs… and turned Wilson’s Pacha into an older (Good)man.
  4. Casey Affleck, Ocean's Eleven, 2001.      Like Danny Glover, another choice of director Steven Soderbergh, les freres Wilson skipped off to the rush-started Royal Tennenbaums. First replacements, the Coens, were likewise tied up, so were the Polishtwins. James Caan’s son, Scott, and Ben Affleck’s brother, Casey, took over.
  5. Sam Rockwell, Heist, 2001.     Among those suggested for Jimmy Silk - smart alek nephew of Danny De Vito.
  6. Tom Green, Stealing Havard, 2002.    As the bad influence pal of Jason Lee, turning to crime to finance hisniece’s first Harvard year. After 31 movies in 13 years, Owen tried to commit suicide a third time in August 2007.
  7. Adam Sandler, I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry, 2006.    Vince Vaughn and Wilson (after Will Smith and Nic Cage or James Gandolfini) as two straight New York firemen (Joe and Benny in 2001) having a gay marriage to win lost health benefits was a plan long before the project reached Sandler (and Kevin James) - and became what Rolling Stone critic Peter Travers trounced as“mealy-mouthed hypocrisy.”
  8. Matthew McConaughey, Tropic Thunder, 2007.      He gave his OK to Rick Peck... and then tried to commit suicide.
  9. Jim Carrey, Mr Popper's Penguins, 2010.   In order of disappearance, it was Ben Stiller, Jack Black and Wilson up for the Midas-rich Popper inheriting six penguins.
  10. Charlie Day, Horrible Bosses, 2010. Matthew McConaughey, Paul Rudd  and Vince Vaughn were also suggested for Dale, victim of Jennifer Aniston’s erotomaniac dentist boss - “You're gonna give me that dong, Dale” - in a masculine take on Nine To Five. 
  11. Mark Wahlberg, 2 Guns, 2012.  In the early days, it was going to be Wilson as the Navy cop opposite Vince Vaughn’s DEA guy - neither one knew the other was also working undercover.  They churned into Dernzel Washington and Wahlberg as Helmers changed from Antoine Fuqua and Bondsmith Martin Campbell to, finally, the Icelandic Baltasar Kormákur.
  12. Ben Stiller, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, 2013.    During the 20 long life of trying to re-make Danny Kaye’s version of the 1939 James Thurber short story… Wilson was in talks after the (first) departure of Jim Carrey. Wilson then quit, himself,  ruining Paramount’s plan  to start shooting a week before its rights deadline. Next in line: Mike Myers, Sacha Baron Cohen. Stiller also directed reducing Mitty’s daydreams and giving him a real adventure - almost as if this was a sequel to an unseen  re-make.
  13. Adam Driver, The Man Who Killed Don Quixote, 2017.




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