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Seth Rogen

 

  1. Rainn Wilson, The Office, TV, 2005-2013. NBC’s take on Ricky Gervais’  BBC mockumentary series was probably very high on Rogen’s Must Do list given  the 30-plus movies he was bursting through  in ten years. Also reading for Dwight Kurt Schrute III were Judah Friedlander, Jarrett Grode. Plus three Matts: Besser, Price and Walsh.  Wilson (first seen for the boss, Michael Scott) survived  the full 187 episodes.  
  2. Jonah Hill, Superbad, 2006.  It took asix years to getit before cameras asquite the dirtiest high school movie. “There was no real implication that it would ever get made,” said Seth.“It was born out of a very pure desire to just see kids acting on film like we acted... and spoke. Just to amuse ourselves, and unfortunately, really filthy jokes are what amuses us.”Apatow called it “one of the funniest movies I've ever been a part of- or near. About three hapless, sexually panicked teenagers hunting for liquor to impress girls.” By now, Seth was too oldto play Seth and played a cop, instead.
  3. Martin Starr, The Incredible Hulk, 2007.    The new green guy was Edward Norton. And for a kind of lucky charm, he wanted one of the fellas from his producer wife Shauna Robertson’s Knocked Up comedy to fill the cameo spot of Computer Nerd. Rogen, Jonah Hill and Jason Segal passed.   Starr starred. Kinda.
  4. James Franco, Pineapple Express, 2008.     Rogen wrote Saul Silver for himself - in 2001. Once famous enough to win a budget, he felt co-star Franco would be funnier and swopped roles with him. At 16, Rogen quit Vancouver stand-up for LA, sunk his claws into Apatow “and haven't let go ever since.” He has been involved as writer or star or both of eleven Apatow projects - six more than Leslie Mann. And she’s Mrs Apatow.
  5. Chiwetel Ejiofor, 2012, 2009.    OK, the Canadian writer-actor has moved away from comedy to be The Green Hornet superhero but wasn’t chasing more A-list actioners. “I don't want to become the kind of superstar who parties, does coke, throws up in the back of a limo. For me, my main goal is simple, to write the kind of comedy that me and my friends would instantly throw money down to see.”
  6. Tom Hardy, This Means War, 2011.    Two  CIA Buddies fall for the same girl.  (Reese Witherspoon ?!!). Mayhem ensues.  Not! Sam wisely backed away from  what made Chicago critic Roger Ebert exclaim: “If there’s anything I hate more than a stupid action comedy, it’s an incompetent stupid action comedy.
  7. Russell Brand, Rock of Ages, 2011.  All singers want to act and all actors want to sing.  Except Rogen. He had lost (a ton of) weight to be Green Hornet. Didn’t improve his voice. He backed away from playing  Lonny because…   “I can’t sing!”  Tom Cruise could - and was staggering as rock star Stacee Jaxx, aka Jim Morrison meets Axel Rose, Alec Baldwin called it a horrible movie.  “I only did it to work with Tom.” Well, the audition worked. They stayed together for Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation, 2014.
  8. Tom Hardy, This Means War, 2011.   Rogen, James Franco, or Justin Timberlake were also up for the CIAgent at war with his senior partner (Bradley Cooper, Colin Farrell or Sam Worthington) - over Reese Witherspoon?! Way back at the turn of the century, it was to be a black two-hander for Martin Lawrence and Chris Rock. But they’d all read the script - “whose sensible parts,” suggested New York Times critic Lous Lumenick, “would fit on a napkin with enough room left over for the Gettysburg Address.” Chicago’s Roger Ebert simply added: “So bad it's nothing else but bad.”
  9. Jeremy Strong, The Trial Of The Chicago 7, 2019. Steven Spielberg signed the great  scenarist Aaron Sorkin (The West Wing, etc) to dramatise the 2006 Chicago 10 documentary produced by Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter about the infamous trial of seven guys charged with conspiracy, inciting to riot, etc., for their anti-war protests during Chicago’s 1968 Democratic Convention.   Paul Greengrass, even Ben Stiller, were possiibles to take over when the 2007 Writers Guild strike upset Spielberg’s  schedule. Ten years later, impressed by Sorkin’s directing debut, Molly’s Game, Spielberg said he should helm his shelved scenario. Sorkin saw no reason to alter  Spielberg’s choice of Sacha Baron Coehn for Abbie Hoffman, while necessarily having to change oher planned players - such as wisely switching activist Jerry Rubin from Rogen to Strong. 

 

 

 





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