Tom Sizemore

  1. Randy Quaid, Days of Thunder, 1989.       Change of used-car dealer Tim Daland in the Tom Cruise thriller. Tom came up with the story. As Tom-formulaic as… Top Gun Goes To Daytona.
  2. Gabriel Byrne, Miller’s Crossing, 1990.  The Coen brothers tackle 30s/40s, gangster noir… Their 1988 draft put Sizemore, Willem Dafoe, Andy Garcia, Elias Koteas and Dylan McDermott in the Tom Reagan frame.
  3. Kevin Bacon, JFK, 1991.
  4. Steve Buscemi, Reservoir Dogs,  19921.
  5. Sam Neil, Jurassic Park, 1992.
  6. James Gandolfini, True Romance1992.  First selected for Virgil, Sizemore was switched to Cody Nicholson by UK director Tony Scott and kindly recommended Gandolfini for his original chartacter – “All right, no more Mr Fucking Nice Guy…”
  7. Robert De Niro, Heat, 1995. Sjzemore was first reserve in case Robert De Niro (or possible replacements, Nick Nolte) dropped out. Never happened so auteur Michael Mann obviously felt obligated to compensate Sizemore with Michael Cheritto. 
  8. Al Pacino, Heat, 1995.  Tom was also discussed as a possible back-up if Pacino pulled out (like if his facelift went askew). Or Al’s initial replacement, Jeff Bridges, also baled.
  9. Gary Busey, The Glimmer Man, 1996.    “Steven Seagal asked me to be in it. I said No and he was really angry. He can drop dead as far as I’m concerned.   I didn’t even read the script. I saw his name and threw it in the trash.”
  10. John C Reilly,  The Thin Red Line, 1998.    A clash of sergeants…   Sizemore was invited to the Amistad set where Steven Spielberg asked about his summer plans. “Looks like I’m going to Australia to make a movie with Sean Penn and Terry Malick about Guadacanal.”   Said Spielberg:   “How about coming to Ireland with Tom Hanks and make a movie about D-Day?” That’s how Tom became Sergeant Horvath in Saving Private Ryan. (“I’d been wanting to play this part for a year”) and not Sergeant Storm. And then Tom ruined his career by appearing in his own sex-tapes. He still managed to knock off 234 screen roles by 2022.

  11. Chazz Palminteri, Hurlyburly, 1998.      Well out of the play about   four Hollywood assholes…
  12. Russell Crowe, Gladiator, 1999.  Ridley Scott had three major problems with his Roman empire epic. First: who could be his (fictional) Maximus Decimus Meridius.Candidates included Antonio Banderas, Mel Gibson, Hugh Jackman and Tom Sizemore (from Scott’s Black Hawk Down, 2000. Second: He looked at the real Colisseum in Rome and said: “Too small”!  Third : Crowe kept rewrtitng ther script. “Your lines are garbage, but I’m the greatest actor in the world, and I can make even garbage sound good.”
  13. Denzel Washington, Training Day, 2000.     Sizemore, Gary Sinise and Bruce Willis were all in the frame for badass undercover cop Alonzo Harris.  Until Denzel walked in – and out with his second Oscar. 
  14. Anthony LaPaglia, Road To Perdition, 2002.    Private Ryan’s Sergeant Horvath was an inevitable suggestion from producer   Steven Spielberg to his UK stage-screen director Sam Mendes for Al Capone. Mendes also saw Alfred Molina, settled on the Australian LaPaglia and then left Capone off-screen… with “special thanks” to the Aussie in the credits.
  15. John Turturo, Fear X (aka Inside Job), Denmark-Canada-UK-Brazil, 2002. Stanley Kubrick meets David Lynch in a slow-burner from Danish director Nicolas Winding Refn about a mall security guard hunting the sniper who randomly killed his wife. Room for Antonionini, too, as he spends hours studying close-circuit video footage. Turturro’s best work in years, as if sending a message to his rivals for the gig: Sizemore, Ray Liotta, Gary Oldman and Mark Ruffalo. 
  16. Chris Penn, Holly, 2005.       All set to be Freddie until his arrest for failing several drug tests. Penn, himself, ODed one year and   two films later.
  17. Rick Yune, The Fifth Commandment, 2005.     “I want some clean time.” He kept walking from roles to have time to kick his drug habit.    “I want this nightmare of drug abuse to be over with and to get on with my career.”
  18. Mel Gibson, The Expendables 3, 2013.      When Jack Nicholson passed and Gibson was undecided about going down the villainy route a second time (after Machete Kills, 2012), Sizemore was a the most likely replacement.
  19. Vincent D’Onofrio, The Magnificent Seven, 2015.   Kevin Costner, Tom Cruise, Matt Damon, Brad Pitt, they aso wisely rode away from this Dullard Seven.How is it possible to write a tepid take of either John Sturges’ 1960 Sevenor its 1953 source, Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai? Then again, writer Nic Pizzolatto made a similar dog’s breakfast out of his second True Detectiveseason. Antoine Fuqua directing meant Denzel Washington would lead the liberators. But minus Sizmore as his *massive) tracker, Jack Horne. Body count was so absurdly high that it should have been named after the guy playing Josiah.  Billy Slaughter.

 Birth year: 1961Death year: 2023Other name: Casting Calls:  19