Beau Bridges

  1. Ryan O’Neal, Love Story, 1970.
  2. Dustin Hoffman, Straw Dogs, 1971.  A (bad) Sam Peckinpah Western set in  a Cornwall, almost entirely inhabited by (violent) village  idiots. In  the mix for the (milque-toast) hero were Nicholson, Beau Bridges, Elliott Gould (booked by Ingmar Bergman for The Touch), Stacy Keach, Sidney Poitier and Donald Sutherland. They probably all agreed with Chicago Sun-Times critic Roger Ebert’s later review: “The most offensive thing about the movie is its hypocrisy; it is totally committed to the pornography of violence, but lays on the moral outrage with a shovel.”
  3. Jeff Bridges, Fat City, 1972.     “Beau got me that gig,” recalled Jeff.  “John Huston thought he was too old for the part, so Beau said: Why don’t you check out my younger brother? So I had the interview in Madrid. The night that I landed, I met this girl in the lobby and she took me out on the town and we ate all this great seafood, drank and really had a ball. The next morning I was feeling rather peculiar. All of the sudden when I got to the interview, it turned out that I was really sick… food poisoning, from the shellfish. The interview was at this museum. John showed me all this fine art while I was vomiting with my mouth closed and swallowing it, trying to maintain! [laugh] He didn’t notice at all, just kept showing me all his favorite paintings!”
  4. Perry King, Mandingo, 1974. Bottoms, Jan-Michael Vincent and the Bridges bros, Beau and Jeff, all wisely refused to play Hammond Maxwell in what Chicago critic Roger Ebert called a piece of racist manure.  “Obscene in its manipulation of human beings and feelings, excruciating to sit through… This is a film I felt soiled by.”
  5. Stacy Keach, The Long Riders, 1980.     In a Western  packed with freres – the  Carradines, Guests,  Quaids – the Bridges could not ride thatway and the Keaches  became Frank and Jesse James.
  6. Harvey Keitel, Thelma & Louise, 1990.
  7. Ed Harris, Glengarry Glen Ross, 1992.     Fought hard for the role…  Triumphed, instead , on TV as… Reagan’s paralysed Press Secretary James Brady, Presley’s Colonel Parker and even Richard Nixon.
  8. Craig Sheffer, A River Runs Through It, 1992.  One Paramount suit rubbished it  – a  goddamn movie about trout!  Redford loved Norman Maclean’s  book about growing up with his younger brother, learning the parallels of fly-fishing and life. “I was going to do it one way or the other. Even… from my own pocket.” He, naturally thought of  Lloyd Bridges  as the Reverend  Maclean and his boys, Beau and Jeff, as… his boys.   (They’d once tried to make it, themselves). Except he didn’t want stars but great intelligence and sensitivity. And Sheffer “looked right and he wanted the role of Norman badly.”  Just as Brad Pitt wanted Paul. Not that Redford treated him kindly.  To begin with…
  9. Ron Perlman, The Last Supper, 1995.     Iowa, not Jerusalem.





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