- Rachel McAdams, Mean Girls, 2003. For her movie debut, she was up for, respectively, Regina and Cady, and became Karen.
- Lindsay Lohan, Mean Girls, 2003. Never mind, Amanda beat Rachel to the role of Meryl Streep’s daughter in Mamma Mia, 2007.
- Kristen Bell, Veronica Mars, TV, 2004-2007. The ex-child model from Allentown, Pennsylvania, and various daytime soaps, lost the titular role and was given Lilly Kane, Veronica's best friend, who was, er, dead.
- Katie Cassidy, Black Christmas, 2006. Katie won the auditions for the lead role of Kelli in what The Guardian critic Philip French called “a remake of a better acted and better-scripted 1974 film” - aka Silent Night, Evil Night.
- Megan Fox, Transformers, 2006. Both Amanda and Emma Stone auditioned for the role of Mikeala Banes - named after director Michael Bay
- Isla Fisher, Confessions of a Shopaholic, 2008. For once, the prerequisite outsider won as Disney chose an unknown (cheaper, sure, but hilarious) after seeing everyone from the Jessicas (Alba and Biel) to Lindsay Lohan (!) and Reese Witherspoon.
- Mia Wasikowska, Alice in Wonderland, 2009. Mia and her gravity - so brilliantly revealed in the psychological In Treatment TV series, 2009 - beat such rivals as Amanda, Anne Hathaway and Lindsay Lohan and the too young Dakota Blue Richards. Burton also kept Hathaway - as The White Queen.
- Sarah Lind, What Goes Up, 2009. Amanda was all set to be Peggy in New Jersey writer-director Jonathan Glatzer’s delayed second movie when - “excuse me, guys!” - she won the role of Sophia in Mamma Mia! 2008,
- Emily Browning, Sucker Punch, 2010. Amanda, Olivia Thirlby and Mia Wasikowska all quit auteur Zack Synder’s “swords-and-corsets fantasy” (Washington Post) following Baby Doll into three differing worlds, er, levels of consciousness. It’s that kinda movie.
- Emma Stone, Marmaduke, 2009. First choice voice for Mazie, the energetic Australian Shepherd tomboy proved unavailable for the screen version of the comic-strip - in 600 papers across more than 20 countries. Owen Wilson voiced “the world's most lovable Great Dane” - which never talked in the funny pages.
- Jessica Alba, The Killer Inside Me, 2010. As directors changed from Andrew Dominik and Marc Rocco to Michael Winterbottom, so did the favourites to play the much beaten hooker Joyce Lakeland. From Amanda to Emily Blunt, Anne Hathaway and, finally, Jessica.
- Carey Mulligan, The Great Gatsby, 2011. Australian director Baz Luhrmann said he was privileged to explore the manipulative Daisy Buchanan “with some of the world's most talented actresses, each one bringing their own particular interpretation, all of which were legitimate and exciting” - Amanda Abbie Cornish, Rebecca Hall, Keira Knightley, Blake Lively, Rachel; McAdams, Natalie Portman, Michelle Williams and the girl up for six films that autumn, Scarlett Johansson. Yet it was Carey he called - “Hello, Daisy!” - when she was on the red carpet at the The Fashion Council Awards in New York. She immediately burst into tears... in front of Karl Lagerfeld and Anna Wintour.
- Shailene Woodley, The Descendants, 2011. Meryl Streep’s Mama Mia screen child auditioned to be George Clooney’s older daughter.
- Mia Wasikowska, Albert Nobbs, 2011. Seyfried and Orlando Bloom were chosen, then replaced by Wasikowska and AaronTaylor-Johnson opposite the titular Glenn Close’s sixth (failed) Oscar nomination.
- Ambyr Childers, The Master, 2011. To her own surprise, the lovely blonde daytime soap alumna of All My Children (she was Colby Chandler for 139 episodes, 2006-2008) beat off such stellar opposition as Amanda, Jennifer Lawrence, Emma Stone, Deborah Ann Woll to become Elizabeth in director Paul Thomas Anderson’s first outing since his 2007 double-Oscar-winning There Will Be Blood.
- Scarlett Johansson, Under The Skin, 2012. Many of the same faces from the late 2010 casting season - Gemma Arterton, Jessica Biel, Abbie Cornish, Megan Fox, Eva Green, January Jones, Blake Lively, Olivia Wilde - were up for for the voracious alien hanging around Glasgow… originally the wife of an alien Brad Pitt, but he couldn’t wait for director Jonathan Glazer to get started on his “chilling masterpiece” (The Guardian). Often rivals for the same roles, Amanda and Olivia Wilde made two films together, Alpha Dog, 2005, and In Time, 2011.
- Rooney Mara, Side Effects, 2012. “My last film,” said Steven Soderbergh. Hardly surprising when he could’t select his own leading lady. His producers refused Blake – like Lindsay Lohan before her. He searched on through Seyfried, Emily Blunt, Alice Eve, Imogen Poots, Olivia Wilde and Michelle Williams before the suits agreed on Rooney.
- Svetlana Khodchenkoiva, The Wolverine, 2012. After Jessica Biel fled, Amanda was up, momentarily, for Viper. the alien friend-turned-foe of the titular Marvel mutant, played (for the sixth time) by Hugh Jackman
- Isla Fisher, Now You See Me, 2012. And now you don’t… Change of Henley for French realisateur Louis Leterrier (The Incredible Hulk, Clash of the Titans) as the FBI and Interpol try to snare some - here’s a first - illusionist bank robbers!
- Emma Stone, Gangster Squad, 2012. The City v Public Enemy #1, circa ’49. Apart from Sean Penn’s uproarious make-up Mickey Cohen (befitting his worst rôle), we’d seen it all before. Only better. Stone won (and wasted) his moll from Seyfried, Camilla Belle, Lily Collins, Maggie Grace, Ashley Greene, Aly Michalka, Teresa Palmer, Emmy Rossum.
- Margot Robbie, Z For Zachariah, 2014. Production was halted and by the time all the problems were ironed out, Seyfried had reported to another gig. The blonde Robbie substituted as the brunette Ann, centre of an eternal triangle - which was just a dystopian couple in Robert C O’Brien’s book… and the 1984 BBC TV version.
- Lily James, Cinderella, 2015. On the pumpkin list for Disney’s live-action version were Bella Heathcote, Imogen Poots, Margot Robbie, Saoirse Ronan, Alicia Vikander, Emma Watson, Gabrielle Wilde. (Seyfried’s previous role obviously counted against her at Disney - Linda Lovelace!) And the slipper went to Downton Abbey’s bright young Lady Rose, plus Natasha Rostova in the BBC’s 2016 War and Peace. Oh, nd Juliet opposite her Prince Charming, Richard Madden, as Romeo.