Vin Diesel

  1. Dana Stubblefield, Reindeer Games, 1999.    “Thought I  was too late but I finally got to work with John Frankenheimer!”  Not so…  The ex-bouncer  proved such a nuisance  that  he was sacked by his idolised director,  during, alas, his final cinema movie. Someone had to Vin and bear It.

  2. Viggo  Mortensen, The Lord of the Rings trilogy, 2001-2003.
  3. Ben Affleck, Daredevil, 2002.    In the DD loop for MM, the blind hero Matt Murdock: Matt Damon, Colin Farrell, Edward Norton (The Incredible Hulk in 2007), Guy Pearce, Patrick Wilson. Diesel was perhaps the most keen, until preferring the Pitch Black sequel, The Chronicles of Riddick. Wise.
  4. Colin Farrell, Daredevil, 2002.   …Idem, when also offered the more villainous Bullseye. Wiser. For the incredibly fast rising Farrell, this was his first time on a motor-bike.   And being bald!
  5. Lucy Liu, Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever, 2002.    For the Game Boy Advance game, the reluctant FBI-DIA duo was once due for Wesley Snipes-Jet Li, then Diesel and Sly. Finally, a Stallone role went, for the first time to a woman. Hadda happen! Didn’t save it from being one of the all-time champion flops – diabolical reviews and making a mere 30% of its budget back. What else when the director signed himself… Kaos!
  6. LL Cool J, SWAT, 2002.    Pop goea the Diesel… Shooting clashed with Diesel’s The Chronicles of Riddick and so, Deke Kay became the much more muscular rapper.
  7. Kristanna Loken, Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, 2003.     Passed on being  T-X, the new terminator machine sent to earth to kill  our Arnold. So  T-X became a Terminatrix. (Riddick was also a woman in  the first draft). 
  8. Tyrese Gibson, 2 Fast, 2 Furious, 2003.     Apart from Riddick’s chronicles, Diesel rapidlly became notorious for turning his back on that which made him  famous. So no Fast sequel for him.
  9. Ice Cube, xXx: State of the Union, 2004.    No xXx sequel, either. Well, Vin there, done that…  .   Before the first  xXx  opened, Vin Diesel and director Rob Cohen agreed on  sequel. Not for long..  Diesel didn’t like the script.. But which one? The one about about modern pirates or t’other about Washington. Cohen  suggested making both: starting with the pirates and keep DC for xXx 3 – instead thatt became xXx 2… with Ice Cube as a new agent, Darius Stone.   Diesel was so busy being fast and furious (ten films by 2023), that he could not make XxX: The Return of Xander Cage until 2016. A fourth chapter, announced in 2019 by The H Collective, never happened.
  10. Ron Perlman, Hellboy, 2004.    Hellboy creator American Mike Mignola and Mexican director Guillermo del Toro (giving up Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban for his dream project) agreed there was one star only – Perlman.  Joe Roth’s Revolution combine said: Diesel. Or his future Fast Five co-star Dwayne Johnson. Del Toro did not agree.  US-Mexican stand-off. “Me – or him!”  End of story.

  11. Mark Wahlberg, Four Brothers, 2004.  Diesel, Ben Affleck, Bradley Cooper, Matt Damon, Vin Diesel, Ethan Hawke, Brad Pitt and Jeremy Renner were in the mix to head the brothers avenging the murder of their adoptive mother. Came across like Death Wishmeets The Sons of Katie Elder(except John Waye and his real siblings were avenging their Dad’s killing in the 1965 Western). A planned Five Brotherssequel never happened. Thankfully.
  12. Karl Urban, Doom, 2005.  Passed on being John  Grimm. So did Dwayne Johnson – preferrtng to play Sarge. Urban supported Diesel in The Chronicles of Riddick, 2003.
  13. Timothy Olyphant, Hitman, 2007.      Offered films by two French directors, Diesel chose wrong. He refused Xavier Gens (like Jason Statham) – passing Agent 47 to the Olyphantastic Deadwood TV star – and made Matthieu Kassovitz’ appallingly Fox-shorn Babylon AD 2008. After considerable martial-arts training. Homeland star Rupert Friend was 47 in the robust 2015 sequel.
  14. Karl Urban, Black Water Transit, 2008.      Bruce Willis planned to headline and produce in 2005, with pal Samuel Bayer debuting as director. The project passed to Diesel in May 2006, Willis got it back in November for him and Samuel L Jackson Bayer was replaced by Tony Kaye in February 2007,  and neither one was among the final eighteen producers. Never seen in any cinema since its market screening (ie looking for buyers) at the 2009 Cannes festival, Transit transferred direct to video.


 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  14