Jon Hamm


  1. Alec Baldwin, 30 Rock, TV, 2006-2012.    The handsome Missourian auditioned for Jack Donaghy – “the best job I  ever had,” said Baldwin. Result: Baldwin won the SAG Award for best sitcom actor in every season  –  a record.  Hamm swent on to win the lead in Mad Men, 2007-2012… and popped up in  and out of 30 Rock as Dr Drew Bard for three seasons.
  2. Adam Scott,  Step Brothers, 2007.   Thomas Lennon also  auditioned for Derek in the rather mean comedy after which, critic Roger Ebert said: “I felt a little unclean.”
  3. Taylor Kitsch, John Carter, 2010.    TV’s Mad Men hot-shot was seen for Edgar Rice Burroughs’ other hero… the  Civil War soldier transported to Mars wars in Disney’s $260m flop!  For this live-action debut, animation director Andrew Stanton (Finding Nemo, WALL-E) – or Disney! – also thought of the inevitable Tom Cruise, plus Eric Bana  and Josh Duhamel. Tarzan’s daddy, Edgar Rice Burroughs’ century-old books went full cricle. In 1931, Looney Tunes director Bob Clampett worked with Burroughs (& Son) on what would have  been the first toon feature (five years before Disney’s Snow White and the Severn Dwarfs). MGM chickened out because “an Earthman on Mars was too outlandish for Midwest American audiences.” Five years later, Universal produced Flash Gordon… Disney never understood sf. Which is why it bought Fox and  Marvel and Lucasfilm and….
  4. Chris Evans, The First Avenger: Captain America, 2010.    Marvel Comics loved the way Alex Ross redesigned Cap Am, but nothis idea for America’s the super-serumed symbol of liberty(from WW II to Obama). “We’ve been saying for years, if you don’t sign Jon Hamm,you’re crazy.” But the Mad Men star was considered too old for an origins talekicking offa ninemovie arc about the patriarch of the Marvel universe.“The deals that they make you do are so Draconian. And, of course, you are signed on for not only the movie… but at least two more that you haven’t read and you’ve no idea what they are going to be and all the crossover ones….   For me to sign on now to do a superhero movie would mean I’d be working until I am 50 as that particular superhero.” 
  5. Henry Cavill, The Man From UNCLE, 2013.   After securing the 60s’ TV series rights in 1993, producer John Davis went through 20 years, 14 scripts,  four directors (letting slip Soderbergh and Tarantino!), plus 19 Napoleon Solos. From George Clooney in 2010 to Tom Cruise three years later. By way of the early-21st century era suspects: Hamm, Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Matt Damon, Leonardo DiCaprio, Joel Edgerton, Michael Fassbender, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ryan Gosling, Joel Kinnaman, Ewan McGregor, Robert Pattinson, Chris Pine, Ryan Reynolds, Alexander Skarsgård (he switched to Tarzan), Channing Tatum. Even Russell Crowe, surely a better bet at 50 for old Waverly, the UNCLE boss.  Poor Davis never got it right! 
  6. Benedict Cumberbatch, Doctor Strange, 2015.  Discussed, planned, written, re-spun since 1986, always dropped despite scripts from Alex Cox, Wes Craven, Bob Gale, etc, until chosen as the  portal into the supernatural side of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.Mads Mikkelsen  was first choice. But that was in in 2013…  Among those later flown up the  flagpole were TV doctor Patrick Dempsey, Johnny Depp, Colin Farrell, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ryan Gosling, Jake Gyllenhaal, Jon Hamm, Tom Hardy, Ethan Hawke, Jack Huston, Oscar Isaac, Matthew McConaughey, Ewan McGregor, Vincent Price (in 1986!), Keanu Reeves (listed but never approached – how wise!), Justin Theroux. Oh and two Jokers: 2015’s Jared Leto and 2018’s Joachin Phoenix.  Finally, production wisely waited until after Cumberbatch’s Hamlet  stage triumph in London. If Iron Man is Mick Jagger, Strange is Jim Morrison… and could be head of the MCU when Robert Downey pawned his ironmongery.
  7. Ben Affleck, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, 2015.
  8. Will Smith, Suicide Squad, 2015.    After seeing 14 possible Harley Quinns, director David Ayer shuffled through 19 Deadshots. None hit the target. Not Hamm or  Daniel Craig, Matt Damon, Johnny Depp, Leonardo DiCaprio, Idris Elba,  Colin Farrell, Michael Fassbender, Joseph Gordon-Levitt.  Nor Oscar Isaac, Joel Kinnaman (he became Rick Flag), Matthew McConaughey, Ewan McGregor, Robert Pattinson, Brad Pitt, Keanu Reeves, Alexander Skarsgård and Jason Statham.  Another Warner/DC flop  because Warner wasn’t Marvel and Smith was way  too top-heavy for a team effort.
  9. Josh Brolin, Deadpool 2, 2017.  With Ryan Reynolds reigning supreme as the wise-cracking, cancer-ridden, super smart-ass hero, who could oppose him as Cable, the heftily armed cyborg? (“You’re dark – sure you’re not from the DC Universe?” our Marvel hero asks him). Deadpool creator Rob Liefeld wanted Russell Crowe – and even after Brolin signed, pushed for Jon Hamm. Other Mr Impregnable ideas included Alec Baldwin, Pierce Brosnan, David Harbour, Stephen Lang, Brad Pitt (he shot his Vanisher cameo in two hours), Michael Shannon and the wrinkly brigade  (yawn) Mel Gibson, Dolph Lundgren, Ron Perlman, Kurt Russell, Arnold Schawarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone and Bruce Willis.Already Marvel’s villain Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War, Brolin had a four-film deal, to reveal more about Cable and, doubtless, extra gags about his stepmother Barbra Streisand’s 1982 Yentl.

 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  9