Sir Michael Gambon

  1. Sean Connery, Diamonds Are Forever, 1969.
  2. Christopher Gable, Doctor Who #135: The Caves of Androzani, TV, 1984.     Mixed signals about Sharez Jek… Rock idols like David Bowie, Roger Daltrey, Mick Jagger and the rockerish Tim Curry – or actors Patrick Allen, Nicholas Ball, Steven Berkoff, Brian Cox, Christopher Gable, Michael Gambon, Julian Glover, John Hurt, Derek Jacobi, , Martin Jarvis, Michael Jayston, Oliver Tobias.  Gambon also up for…  
  3. Martin Cochrane, Doctor Who #135: The Caves of Androzani, TV, 1984.      Gambon, Steven Berkoff and Julian Glover lost their promotion to General Chellak – to Cochrane. Yes, Martin, the older brother of the Whoverse regular Michael Cochrane.
  4. Alan Howard, The Cook, The Thief, His Wife and Her Lover, 1989.       The Lover became The Thief when Albert Finney left Peter Greenaway’s pug-uglies.
  5. Alan Rickman, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, 1990.   As Rickman kept passing, the Sheriff of Nottingham was offered to Gambobn, Jon Finch, Richard E Grant, Ian McKellen, Sam Neill, Oliver Reed, Patrick Stewart. – even John Cleese! Then, Rickman won the right to play him his way, stealing much more than Robin, which had Kevin Costner allegedly, ordering the curtailing of the Sheriff’s scenes.
  6. Jon Polito, Miller’s Crossing, 1990.  The Coen brothers tackle  30s/40s, gangster noir…  Their 1988 draft had Gambon, Phillip Bosco, Michael Gazzo, Joe Mantegna and John Seitz suggested for  Italian crime boss Johnny Caspar, arch rival of Albert Finney’s Irish gang leader, Leo O’Bannion. The Coens had wanted Polito to play Eddie Dane, but he asked to be Caspar…  in the first of his five films for the brothers during not 1990-2000.
  7. Hugh Grant, Love Actually, 2003.        In one of the (too) many Richard Curtis love stories, the bachelor UK Prime Minister falls for the 10 Downing Street’s tea-lady. Who should be elected as PM? Gambon was Harry Pottering. Michael Crawford was back on Broadway. Anthony Hopkins was shooting The Human Stain in Quebec. Result: Grant stole the movie in a landslide victory.
  8. Peter O’Toole, Venus, 2005. “Don’t see the point of juggling yoghurt with this mad fucker any longer… I think he is genuinely crazed. It’s like dealing with a six-year-old. He is clearly under the illusion that he is a genius. Alas, his last good film was 20 years ago.” Notting Hilldirector Roger Michell’s diary notes about Peter O’Toole’s final film. He interferred with the script and the castingand “made the whole process… as miserable as possible from practically the first moment,”said Michell, who even discussed replacing him with Gambon, Jim Broadbent, Michael Caine, Michael Gambon or John Hurt. Shooting was delayed when O’Toole cracked a rib and contracted a chest infection, returning to work as “a very doddery O’Toole, who was knackered, ill, slow and fragile. But I must finish the film before he croaks [He looked like a corpse on the poster], breaks a bit more of himself or contracts MRSA” End result: O’Toole’s eighth and final Oscar nomination. He never won any of them. Not even for Lawrence of Arabia.
  9. Colin Salmon, Doctor Who #195: Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead, TV, 2008.     “The Great Gambon,” as Sir Ralph Richardson called him, had to pass on playing Doctor Moon opposite Doc11 David Tennant… but Harry Potter’s Professor Dumbledore joined the Eleventh, Matt Smith, in #213: A Christmas Carol.
  10. John Lithgow, Love Is Strange, 2013.        When scheduling prevented Gambon from being Alfred Molina’s gay lover for 38 years, Molina immediately suggest Lithgow, a good friend since the Brit moved his act (and actress wife Jill Gascoine) to the US in the mid-90s. “The best script I’ve read in years,” enthused Lithgow, “a vivid portrait of marriage, with all its joy, folly, and occasional heartbreak.”
  11. Kenneth Branagh, Wallander, TV, 2008-2010.      Several companies were trying to set up an English lingo series of Henning Mankell’s Swedish cop, Kurt Wallander, of Ystad, near Malmö. Movie actors Gambon, Jason Isaacs and Clive Owen were too busy. Then, Branagh ran into the novelist at an Ingmar Bergman film festival and asked to play “this fascinatingly flawed but deeply human detective.” One of his most perfect roles – shot in Ystad, often at the same time as the Swedish TV series starring Krister Henriksson (and before him, Rolf Lassgård).
  12. James Corden, Into The Woods, 2013.




 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  12